Obama White House to Spend More Than $1.5 Billion on Obamacare Advertising
New Congressional estimates show the Obama administration is requesting another $774 million for Obamacare “outreach” and advertising in the 2015 budget. This is on top of the estimated $684 million they spent this year and the $52 million they spent on high-profile ads with athletes and Hollywood celebrities. That means the combined total in taxpayer funded advertising will be over $1.5 billion.
Barack Obama said last week, “We didn’t make a hard sell. We didn’t have billions of dollars in commercials like some critics did.”
It now looks like that was a lie, too.
The Examiner reported:
Republicans are demanding greater transparency on how much the administration spent to promote and implement Obamacare — and hitting back at President Obama’s claim that he “didn’t make a hard sell.”
The new effort comes after Obama’s claim that the administration met its goal of enrolling more than 7 million people without spending billions.
“We didn’t make a hard sell,” Obama said. “We didn’t have billions of dollars to spend on commercials like our critics did.”
But both Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill estimate the administration has spent roughly $4 to 5 billion to get the Affordable Care Act running, including hundreds of millions to build and repair healthcare.gov.
Some Republicans point to outside estimates suggesting the administration spent more than $1 billion alone on promotional efforts — including outreach, marketing and advertising — to boost enrollment in the federal exchanges.
Critics say the administration is refusing to detail how money is being spent…
…“Maybe the president should have called me for the numbers,” said Rep. Jack Kingston, R-Ga., who chairs the appropriations subcommittee that funds HHS, referring to Obama’s statement that he didn’t have “billions” to counter critics. Kingston believes over $1 billion has been spent on promotional efforts alone.
“I could have told him about the $774 million he requested for advertising and outreach in his budget or the $684 million already spent and the additional $52 million spent on celebrity endorsements of Obamacare.”
Rep. Jack Kingston’s figures are based on the $774 million he says Obama requested for outreach and advertising in his fiscal year 2015 budget request, an Associated Press article that makes a blanket estimate that the administration will spend $684 million on Obamacare advertising and promotion in its first year and a Fortune magazine article citing the $52 million spent so far this year on ads, including some with NBA star LeBron James and other athletes.