CourierPostOnline

MacArthur Takes Aim At Negative Ads

Courier-Post — April 12, 2017

By Kim Mulford

EVESHAM — U.S. Rep. Tom MacArthur, R-Burlington, fired back Wednesday at ad campaigns criticizing the congressman for his stance on the American Health Care Act, a measure President Donald Trump hoped would replace the Affordable Care Act.

"I have now been attacked by both the right and the left," MacArthur said, during a news conference at his Marlton congressional office. "Outside groups in the past two weeks have been attacking me with paid advertising dollars for working to improve this bill, instead of just walking away."

"Welcome to the face of compromise," MacArthur said. "That's what compromise is."

MacArthur has been the target of weekly protests outside his congressional offices led by New Jersey Citizen Action, a grassroots group. He said the group uses paid organizers to bring in protesters from outside his legislative district.

Club For Growth, a conservative group, has targeted the swing district with television and online campaigns, MacArthur said.

This week, an organization called Save My Care, part of Protect Our Care Coalition, released a television ad that will air during the congressional recess in New Jersey's 3rd District, which includes most of Burlington County and part of Ocean County. The ad cites reports that the latest proposal by the Trump administration and House Republican leaders would eliminate protections for people with pre-existing conditions.

MacArthur called the ad "fear-mongering" and "dishonest," and said his proposed amendment protects people with pre-existing conditions, adds billions in funding for vulnerable populations, and prohibits gender discrimination. The proposal has not been made public.

Referring to people now on Medicaid, MacArthur said, "Nobody will lose a thing. ... That's a misunderstanding."

He said constituents reach out to him daily with concerns about their medical care. He said some were forced to cancel their insurance coverage because premiums rose by 80 percent. He cited rising premiums and declining competition in the insurance marketplace as reasons why the Affordable Care Act is not sustainable.
Charles Murawski of Southampton has been protestingBuy Photo

Charles Murawski of Southampton has been protesting outside Rep. Tom MacArthur's congressional offices for weeks. The 70-year-old said he is concerned about losing prescription coverage if the Affordable Care Act is replaced. (Photo: Kim Mulford/Staff photographer)

MacArthur was the only Republican from New Jersey to vote against a budget resolution that would clear the way for the law's repeal, and then became the only representative from the state to support its proposed replacement.

Maura Collinsgru, health care program director for N.J. Citizen Action, said the congressman "doesn't get it."

"He's the sole member of the New Jersey delegation supporting this bill that will have devastating consequences for millions of people across New Jersey, not to mention the billions we will lose in state funding," the Palmyra resident said as she stood with protesters outside MacArthur's office Wednesday. "So, yes, at this point, we are encouraging people to call Tom MacArthur. (He is) putting the people of New Jersey at risk — and he needs to stop."

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