When fundraising stunts go awry

WHEN FUNDRAISING STUNTS GO AWRY…. Rick Scott and his Conservatives for Patients Rights, the leading opponents of health-care reform, sent an email to its membership this morning, alerting them to “an important development.” From the letter:

As you may know, the liberal group Health Care for America Now recently started running a mudslinging TV ad against me personally. After reviewing HCAN’s ad, Comcast has determined that it is misleading and has been pulled off the air.

By attacking me, HCAN proved that they were desperate to change the subject and not debate the substance of what we believe — choice, competition, accountability and personal responsibility — versus what they want which is government-run health care. But they were taught a lesson. You can try to change the subject, but you can’t lie to change the subject…. That’s why I need your help….

The irony is rich. Scott is falsely accusing HCAN of running a deceptive ad (the ad was truthful), it’s arguing that Comcast pulled HCAN’s ad (Comcast did nothing of the sort), all the while insisting that “you can’t lie to change the subject.”

This from a group that’s already run wildly misleading television ads.

In our reality, HCAN bought an ad on Comcast. The media buy lasted through May 13. The ad stopped airing, not because Conservatives for Patients Rights didn’t like it, but because the contract ran out.

Rick Scott is claiming victory — and soliciting funds from donors who may not know better — for something he had nothing to do with. Even for Conservatives for Patients Rights, this is pretty cheap.

And as the healthcare debate unfolds further, it’s only going to get worse.