A familiar face is hitting the airwaves to promote the Obama administration’s new healthcare law to the nation’s senior citizens. The pitchman is 84-year-old Andy Griffith, a lifelong Democrat whose role as Mayberry Sheriff Andy Taylor on The Andy Griffith Show made him a lasting symbol of small-town values. Medicare is picking up the $700,000 tab for the advertisements.
In the commercials, which are airing on The Weather Channel, CNN, Hallmark and Lifetime, Griffith assures Americans that “good things are coming” as a result of the healthcare law. He lists free preventive checkups and lower-cost prescriptions for Medicare patients as two of the benefits. According to some polls, senior citizens are skeptical about the healthcare law because Medicare cuts will provide a significant share of the financing to cover the uninsured.
The ads come at a time when Medicare is celebrating its 45th anniversary. In the ad’s background is a photo of President Lyndon Johnson signing the Medicare bill into law. Griffith assures senior citizens that better protections are coming, thanks to the healthcare reform law.