[Homestead] If you are in a California hospital, don't call a nurse, call Schwartzenegger

tvoivozhd tvoivozd at infionline.net
Wed Feb 2 13:56:34 EST 2005

San Francisco Chronicle

Matier and Ross
Nurses group punches back at Schwarzenegger in TV ad


The 60,000-strong California Nurses Association is firing

back at Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger with a national TV

campaign depicting the self- proclaimed reformer as just

another tool of the monied interests.

The 60-second spot -- which was produced gratis by

documentary maker Robert Greenwald (as in "Outfoxed" and

"Uncovered: The War on Iraq") -- opens with the governor's

foot-in-mouth comments about nurses being "special

interests" who are mad at him because "I kick their butt."

The ad then kicks some butt of its own, as veteran nurses

respond both to Schwarzenegger's comments and to his plan

to freeze nurse-patient staffing levels.

"The one thing the public should know,'' says 20-year-plus

nurse Melita Dionosio-Temple, "is that one day you will be

in that bed and realize that because of the number of

patients one nurse has to take care of, you may be

calling, and there's nobody there.''

Nurses union leader Rose Ann DeMoro said the ad "goes to

the heart of the matter, which is that the governor is

trying to turn the state Capitol into a fraternity for

corporate interests."

"I like to think of it as 'Conan vs. the Nurses,' " DeMoro


The ad is also a slap at the hospital industry, which did

its own "thank you" ad after Arnold put a hold on lowering

of the patient-to-staff ratios that had been green-lighted

by former Gov. Gray Davis.

DeMoro said the nurses had decided to go national with the

ad (they're doing a $100,000 cable buy) because Arnold is

going national with his efforts to raise more money for

his "reform" initiatives.

As for the governor's react: "We expect special interests

to spend money against us this year,'' said spokesman Rob

Stutzman, adding that the Schwarzenegger-backed reforms

have been "widely supported, even by liberal editorial

pages in the state.''

"We have to keep the focus on making sure health care is

available -- and that means hospitals need to be open,''

Stutzman said.

Run Arnold Run: Arnold Schwarzenegger hasn't officially

said he's running for re-election, but he's sure acting

like a candidate -- including a stop Tuesday in San

Francisco to meet privately with a group of high-powered

financial backers.

Among the invitees: Gap founder Donald Fisher, Safeway

Chairman Steve Burd and Oakland A's owner Steve Schott.

"We are now beginning the process of getting the re-

election committee funded, and that will be the focus for

this year,'' Team Arnold fund-raiser Marty Wilson said.

"He didn't say he was definitely running, but we are

getting him ready to run,'' Wilson said. "That's a time

and place of his choosing when he makes that announcement


Not that Arnold should have much of a problem raising

money -- either for his re-election or for a list of

ballot measures he's threatening to push in a special

election this year.

In his short 19 months of political life, Schwarzenegger

has raised more than $40 million from contributors -- and

tossed in $10 million of his own for the recall campaign.

That adds up to more than $50 million, or an average of $

2.6 million a month.

What's next?

The campaign is expected to announce a series of fund-

raising dinners soon around the state.

"We're just getting the re-election committee shaped up,

and ready to rock 'n' roll,'' Wilson said.

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