Schwartz TV ad: She gets it done

    Casting herself as the progressive who gets things done, U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz has started her TV advertising campaign in the Pennsylvania gubernatorial race. Her first spot,  dubbed “Got it Done,” showcases her efforts in the Pennsylvania Senate to get health coverage for Pennnsylvanians’ kids. (You can see it above.)

    Schwartz has long pointed to the state’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) as her signature accomplishment when she served in the state Senate. But some have questioned whether Schwartz has exaggerated her role in the 1992 passage of the program.

    A December piece in Philadelphia Magazine says former state Rep. Allen Kukovich and Dave Myers, a former special assistant to then-Gov. Bob Casey, remembered Schwartz’s role as somewhat less central than Schwartz was used to telling people.

    In releasing the TV ad, the Schwartz campaign took the issue on, providing quotes from many people including Kukovich, who calls Schwartz “an instrumental partner” in getting CHIP enacted, and saying that it wouldn’t have passed the Senate “without the leadership of Allyson Schwartz.”

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    Schwartz campaign spokesman Mark Bergman says Kukovich provided the statement to the campaign in March, months after he spoke to Philadelphia Magazine. It doesn’t contradict anything the magazine said, but gives Schwartz a substantial measure of credit for the program. I was unable to reach Kukovich today.

    I wasn’t covering Harrisburg when CHIP was passed, but I do remember Kukovich as the kind of smart, practical progressive who understood how to build relationships and work the levers in the Capitol to turn ideas into laws. It seems he was in earlier on the plan, but he was in the state House, and Schwartz was the lead sponsor in the Senate.

    You can read the Philly Mag piece here.

    The  material the Schwartz campaign provided is below. Schwartz’s words in the ad are in italics, followed by supporting material:

    “Got It Done”Script Facts

    SCHWARTZ: “There were a lot of kids in our state who did not have access to insurance.”

    As passed In 1992, around 90,000 uninsured children of working parents were eligible to enroll In CHIP. In December 1992, the Associated Press reported, “A state-funded program that will provide health-care insurance to about 40,000 Pennsylvania children was signed into law Wednesday by Gov. Robert P. Casey … The plan provides health-care coverage free or at reduced cost, and targets children of working parents who can’t afford private health-care insurance, don’t qualify for Medicare [sic] benefits or whose employers don’t provide medical coverage … About 90,000 uninsured children in the state will be eligible, but officials expect about half will enroll.” [AP, 12/02/92]

    SCHWARTZ: “But in the state Senate, no one really seemed to care.”

    Gov. Casey: “The state Senate is alone in its unwillingness to realize the urgency and importance of providing uninsured children with the health coverage they need.”

    In November 1992, in the Patriot-News, Casey wrote, “For hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvania children, a trip to the doctor for a measles shot or to treat an ear ache is a luxury their parents can’t afford … That’s why I developed in cooperation with Rep. Allen Kukovich, D-Westmoreland, and Sen. Allyson Schwartz, D-Philadelphia, a plan to offer health insurance coverage for children. The need is clear and irrefutable … The state Senate is alone in its unwillingness to realize the urgency and importance of providing uninsured children with the health coverage they need.” [Governor Bob Casey, Patriot-News, 11/09/92]


    In October 2004, The Intelligencer reported, “In the Senate, Schwartz quickly carved a niche for herself as an advocate for children and families, concentrating much of her work on health care and education.” [The Intelligencer, 10/21/04]

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: “A pioneer on health-care issues.” An October 2010 editorial in The Philadelphia Inquirer stated, “As a pioneer on health-care issues, Democratic Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz deserves another term serving Northeast Philadelphia and Montgomery County.” [Editorial, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 10/31/10]

    SCHWARTZ: “One of the first pieces of legislation I worked on – you know it as CHIP.”

    Schwartz Known As The Mother Of CHIP. In October 2004, The Intelligencer reported that Republican state Sen. Joe Conti said Allen Kukovich and Schwartz are known as “the father and mother of the CHIP program.” [The Intelligencer, 10/21/04]

    According to Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program website, “On Dec. 2, 1992, former Gov. Robert P. Casey signed into law House Bill 20 (HB 20), better known as the Children’s Health Insurance Act. Legislation initially was sponsored by Rep. Allen G. Kukovich (D) in the House, and Sen. Allyson D. [sic] Schwartz (D) in the Senate. HB 20 created the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).” [Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program website, accessed 12/29/13]

    SCHWARTZ: “I pushed, and I pushed hard, and we got it done.”

    Allen Kukovich said, “We couldn’t have passed the Pennsylvania Children’s Health Insurance Program out of the Senate without the leadership of Allyson Schwartz. She was an instrumental partner in creating this successful initiative that has helped hundreds of thousands of families in Pennsylvania and millions across the country.” [Allen Kukovich, 3/19/14]

    Bucks County Courier Times: “Schwartz Spearheaded The Drive To Create Pennsylvania’s Landmark Children’s Health Insurance Program.”

    In November 2008, the Bucks County Courier Times reported, “During her time in Harrisburg, Schwartz spearheaded the drive to create Pennsylvania’s landmark Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) that provided health-care insurance for children of middle class and working families.” [Bucks County Courier Times, 11/05/08]

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: Schwartz’s Legislative Bona Fides Include “The Creation Of The State’s Children’s Health Insurance Program.” According to an April 2004 article in The Philadelphia Inquirer, “Schwartz, 55, is a polished political veteran who drew heavily on her legislative bona fides, including the creation of the state’s Children’s Health Insurance Program.” [The Philadelphia Inquirer, 4/28/04]

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: Schwartz “Pioneered Children’s Insurance Programs While A Legislator In Harrisburg.” In January 2009, an editorial in The Philadelphia Inquirer stated, “[Schwartz] pioneered children’s insurance programs while a legislator in Harrisburg.” [Editorial, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 1/17/09]

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: “Schwartz Made Her Name Spearheading Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program Legislation.” According to a November 2006 article in The Philadelphia Inquirer, “As a four-term state senator, Schwartz made her name spearheading Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program legislation, which now covers 150,000 children. She wants to expand that on the federal level.” [The Philadelphia Inquirer, 11/03/06]

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: Schwartz “Was Among The Creators Of The State CHIP Program.” According to a February 2009 article in The Philadelphia Inquirer, “Currently, there are about 184,000 children on SCHIP in Pennsylvania, up 11 percent from a year ago. In Philadelphia, enrollment increased from 26,611 in October 2008 to 28,273 this month. ‘We should be proud in Pennsylvania that we set the model for SCHIP,’ said Schwartz, who … was among the creators of the state CHIP program.” [The Philadelphia Inquirer, 2/10/09]

    SCHWARTZ: “And it was signed into law by Governor Casey.”

    Gov. Casey: Schwartz “Took The Lead” On CHIP In The SenateGov. Casey: I Developed Children’s Health Insurance Program “In Cooperation” With Allen Kukovich & Schwartz. In November 1992, advocating for the passage of the Children’s Health Insurance Program, in the Patriot-News, Governor Casey wrote, “That’s why I developed in cooperation with Rep. Allen Kukovich, D-Westmoreland, and Sen. Allyson Schwartz, D-Philadelphia, a plan to offer health insurance coverage for children. The need is clear and irrefutable. Under the plan, children from families with annual incomes of up to 300 percent of the federal poverty level ($41,850 for a family of four) would be eligible for free or reduced-cost health insurance.” [Governor Bob Casey, Patriot-News, 11/09/92]

    Gov. Casey: Schwartz “Took The Lead” On CHIP In The Senate. On Dec. 2, 1992, at the public signing ceremony of HB 20, Gov. Casey said, “I want to give a special word of thanks and commendation to the people who worked so hard for the passage of House Bill 20, especially Representative Allen Kukovich, who fought long and hard for this program, Sen. Allyson Schwartz, who took the lead in the new program in the Senate, and to Senator Joe Loeper and Senator John Peterson who worked with us to forge a compromise in the Senate.” [Statement by Governor Robert P. Casey, Public Signing Ceremony – HB 20, 12/02/92]

    Gov. Casey: “I Commend Rep. Allen Kukovich & Sen. Allyson Schwartz For Making This Effort A Success.” In a November 1992 statement hailing the passage of the Children’s Health Insurance Plan through the legislature, Gov. Casey said, “I commend Rep. Allen Kukovich (D-Westmoreland) and Sen. Allyson Schwartz (D-Philadelphia) for making this effort a success.” [PR Newswire, 11/24/92]

    SCHWARTZ: “It became the national model for Bill Clinton.”

    President Clinton Used Pennsylvania’s CHIP As A Model For The National ProgramPennsylvania’s CHIP Was Specifically Cited In The Federal Legislation, Signed By President Clinton, That Created The National State Children’s Health Insurance Program. The Balanced Budget Act of 1997, which was signed by President Clinton and created the federal State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), specifically cited Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) as a model to be duplicated by other states. [Public Law: 105-33, Sec. 2103(d)(1)(C)]

    Hillary Clinton Said Pennsylvania’s Health Care Programs For Women & Children Are A “Model For The Rest Of The County.”According to the a brochure for Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program released by the Office of the Governor in 1995, Hillary Clinton said that Pennsylvania’s health care programs for women and children are a “model for the rest of the country.” [Children’s Health Insurance Program of Pennsylvania Brochure, Office of the Governor, 1995]

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: Pennsylvania’s CHIP “Was A Model For” President Clinton’s Children’s Health Insurance Program.In August 1998, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported, “President Clinton’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which was signed into law last year, provided grants to states to expand coverage for children whose families could not afford private insurance but did not qualify for Medicaid… Pennsylvania’s program, enacted in 1993, was a model for the national version.” [The Philadelphia Inquirer, 8/05/98]

    Pennsylvania Insurance Department: “CHIP Has Been Acknowledged By Both Congress & The President As A Model National Program.” According to a 1997 news release issued by the Pennsylvania Insurance Department, “Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge said today he is gratified that the new federal budget specifically recognizes the success of Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)… The new federal budget signed by the President Tuesday, cites CHIP as a model to be duplicated by other states. The budget contains a provision calling for a five-year, $20.25 billion federal funding program for state children’s health insurance programs…CHIP has been acknowledged by both Congress and the President as a model national program which provides free or low-income health insurance for working families. With a budget of $32 million, CHIP serves nearly 54,000 children. CHIP is funded by the dedication of three cents of the existing state cigarette tax.” [Pennsylvania Insurance Department, 8/07/97]

    Governor Corbett: “People Often Forget That The National Child Health Insurance Program, CHIP, Is Firmly Based On An Original Pennsylvania Program.” In March 2011, The Associated Press reported that at a U.S. House of Representatives field hearing in Harrisburg, Corbett said, “The states have been and continue to be the best places to decide what is best for its residents. States are the place where innovation takes place; we’re the laboratories.” He added, “People often forget that the national child health insurance program, CHIP, is firmly based on an original Pennsylvania program.” [AP, 3/23/11]

    SCHWARTZ: “And hundreds of thousands of children in Pennsylvania have benefited.”

    Nearly 200,000 Kids Enrolled In CHIP In Pennsylvania In 2014March 2014: More Than 188,000 Kids Were Enrolled In Pennsylvania’s CHIP. According to Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program website, in March, 2014, 188,025 kids were enrolled in CHIP in Pennsylvania. [Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program, accessed 4/02/14]

    SCHWARTZ: “It’s the kind of big ideas, it’s the kind of experience, it’s the kind of leadership, I’ll bring as your next governor.”

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: “Schwartz Pioneered A Children’s Health-Insurance Program While Serving In The Pennsylvania Senate, And Has Continued To Show Leadership In Congress On Health Issues.” An October 2010 editorial in The Philadelphia Daily News stated, “Schwartz pioneered a children’s health-insurance program while serving in the Pennsylvania Senate, and has continued to show leadership in Congress on health issues.” [Editorial, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 10/25/10]

    The Intelligencer: “Schwartz Has Built A Reputation For Bipartisan Action.” In October 2004, The Intelligencer reported, “Even among Republicans, Schwartz has built a reputation for bipartisan action.” [The Intelligencer, 10/21/04]

    Morning Call: Schwartz “Has Taken A Leadership Role In The Debate In Washington.” A June 2009 headline in the Morning Call read, “Schwartz in the fray on health care; The Montco Democrat has taken a leadership role in the debate in Washington.” [Headline, Morning Call, 6/29/09]

    Reading Eagle: “Schwartz Is Considered A Leader In Health Care Policy.” In September 2013, in the Reading Eagle, Mary Young wrote, “Because of her background, Schwartz is considered a leader in health care policy.” [Mary Young, Reading Eagle, 9/07/13]

    The Philadelphia Inquirer: “A Longtime Pioneer On Health Care & Other Social Issues.” An October 2008 editorial in The Philadelphia Inquirer stated, “As a longtime pioneer on health care and other social issues, Schwartz also continues the legislative focus she had during 14 years in the Pennsylvania Senate.” [Editorial, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 10/23/08]

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