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Business group brings Medicaid fight to the airwaves

A coalition of business groups headed by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce is airing television ads to support Gov. Jan Brewer’s Medicaid expansion plan.

The Arizona Business Coalition, a chamber-led independent expenditure committee, unveiled a television ad Friday extolling the benefits of Brewer’s plan, which would expand the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System coverage to anyone earning up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level, in accordance with the Affordable Care Act.

The ad refers to the Medicaid proposal as “the governor’s fiscally conservative Medicaid plan,” and features an image of Brewer flanked by five other Republican governors who are pushing Medicaid expansion.

“When folks go to the ER and can’t pay, you get stuck with the bill. Close to $2,000 every year. But conservative governors are protecting their taxpayers and saving hospitals. Gov. Brewer’s conservative plan will keep our state budget balanced while providing quality health care to Arizona citizens so we can focus our budget on what matters most, like education, public safety and growing our economy,” a woman’s voice says.

The ad ends by urging viewers to contact their legislators at the campaign’s website, www.restoringarizona.com.

Jaime Molera, a spokesman for the Arizona Business Coalition, wouldn’t say how large the ad buy was or which stations would air it. He said the ad, expected to be the first of several, is meant to both show Arizonans how much support there is in the business community for Brewer’s plan and to build up public support for the proposal.

“We wanted to let folks know that the business community and the leaders across the state are putting their money where their mouth is. They see this as so critical to get this done that they are going to invest in disseminating information on why this has to happen and supporting what the governor’s position is,” Molera said.

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