Conservatives for Patients' Rights
Conservatives for Patients' Rights (CPR) is a health care pressure group founded by Rick Scott in February 2009. Scott has stated that CPR has an intention of putting pressure on U.S. Democrats to enact health care legislation based on free-market principles. CPR opposes the broad outlines of President Obama's health care reform plan, and has hired Creative Response Concepts, a public relations firm which previously worked with the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth.
Conservatives for Patients' Rights assert themselves as advocates for better health care. Their plan is described as the pillars of health care reform: "choice, competition, accountability and personal responsibility."
The CPR campaign for competition suggests a release of burdensome regulations against private companies in allowance of unfettered competition across the states. Scott said at that time of the CPR launch, "[When] the government gets involved, you run out of money and health care gets rationed." Scott has created and starred in a series of commercials advocating against greater government involvement in health care. CPR-affiliated citizens have protested at town hall meetings on the issue. CPR has provided a list of local town hall meetings discussing the issue, which the group urge their supporters to attend and have provided video footage on how previous people have handled the situation.
Opposition to the campaign
In May 2009, the group Health Care for America Now (HCAN) started broadcasting an advertisement in the Washington, D.C. area and in Scott's home town of Naples, Florida, highlighting a fraud case in which Scott was indicted. HCAN said of Scott: "He and his insurance-company friends make millions from the broken system we have now.".
In August 2009, Katie Brickell and Kate Spall, two British woman who featured in a CPR commercial attacking the National Health Service, said they were "duped" and the commercial misrepresents them because in reality they strongly support state-funded health care. Both told The Times newspaper that they had been told they were being interviewed for a documentary examining healthcare reform, and neither knew the footage would be used for such a commercial.
- Mullins, Brody; Kilman, Scott (February 26, 2009). "Lobbyists Line Up to Torpedo Speech Proposals". Wall Street Journal.
- Conservative PR Firm That Repped Swift Boat Vets Now Helping Fight Sotomayor, The Washington Post
- Rutenberg, Jim (April 1, 2009). "Health Critic Brings a Past and a Wallet". The New York Times.
- The Plans from the CPR website
- [Congressional Town Hall Meetings] from the CPR website.
- Fox News Coverage on Town Hall Meeting
- Socialized Medicine Belittled on Campaign Trail from NPR.
- Health Care Realities from The New York Times
- New TV Ad Exposes Health Reform Critic’s Shady Past, Health Care for America Now
- Dan Eggen (May 11, 2009). "Ex-Hospital CEO Battles Reform Effort". Washington Post.
- Foster, Patrick (August 14, 2009). "Antihealthcare lobbyists duped us say Katie Brickell and Kate Spall". The Times (London). Retrieved April 30, 2010.
- Paul Krugman, The Town Hall Mob, The New York Times.