My Mom Says I'll Protect Medicare, Honest

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Oct. 11 2012 12:49 PM

My Mom Says I'll Protect Medicare, Honest

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- My favorite trope in 2012's campaign ads is the Credulous Mother -- the elderly woman who assures voters that her kid would never ever cut Medicare. It's an old idea, but we really saw it blossom after Mark Amodei enlisted his mom for Nevada special election ads in 2011, assuring the olds that he would give them all the benefits they needed. We're seeing it again as Republicans try and message against their votes for the Ryan budget.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

In this ad, South Dakota Rep. Kristi Noem brings out her mother to warn that Medicare is being replaced by "government-run health care," which is a brief lesson in focus-grouping, not a mistake.

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Here, Rep. Sean Duffy of Wisconsin re-enacts the hard work of getting his mom to vote for him. "Don't believe the lies. Sean will do what's right for Medicare and seniors."

Here, Rep. Robert Dold's mother tells us that her son voted "against cutting Medicare," which is true if you ignore his votes for the Ryan budgets.

If you see a Credulous Mom ad in your home state or prefecture, send it along!

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.