- The Washington Times - Saturday, December 28, 2013

The latest sexually charged ad campaign pushing Obamacare has now offended some members of its target audience, namely gay men.

A video advertisement released shortly before Christmas by Out2Enroll, which features four young buff men wearing tight underwear and not much else, drew an angry blast from the gay conservative organization Log Cabin Republicans.

“This cynical ad betrays the depths Obamacare advocates will sink to in order to pad their pathetic enrollment numbers,” Log Cabin Republicans executive director Gregory T. Angelo said in a statement.

Mr. Angelo urged President Obama to “distance himself from this nonsense and denounce it immediately,” saying that the campaign promotes “harmful stereotypes that gay men are nothing but sex-crazed lechers.”

“At a time when left-wing propagandists are decrying Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson for equating homosexuality with promiscuity and deviance, Out2Enroll and others should take a look in the mirror and ask if the truth is that they are the ones responsible for promoting such harmful stereotypes,” said Mr. Angelo.

The Log Cabin Republicans are “the only LGBT advocacy organization in the Obamacare Repeal Coalition,” according to the statement.

SEE ALSO: MILLER: Obamacare ads target young women for birth control pills

Conor Gaughan, managing partner of Collective Conscience, which helped create the ad, posted an article on Huffington Post arguing that the sexual content of the video was justified by the importance of its mission to “build visibility” for the Affordable Care Act.

“Does it use some self-deprecating stereotypes? Perhaps. Is it unconventional? Certainly. Trivial? Far from it,” said Mr. Gaughan. “We believe that our fun and playful video will be an effective tool to raise awareness among the LGBT community, and specifically younger gay men.”

The video isn’t the first Obamacare ad to embrace the age-old Madison Avenue adage that “sex sells.” Social-media posts promoting Colorado’s health-care exchange feature a young woman holding a pack of birth-control pills as she ogles an attractive young man.

“OMG, he’s hot! Let’s hope he’s as easy to get as this birth control,” says the woman in the post. ‘My health insurance covers the pill, which means all I have to worry about is getting him between the covers.”

Meanwhile, the enrollment deadline to receive insurance coverage by Jan. 1 has been a moving target. The Obama administration moved the original Dec. 23 deadline to Dec. 24, but then the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced that anyone who had started an application would be able to call in and finish.

“Tell our customer service representative that you’ve been trying to enroll and explain why you couldn’t finish by the deadline. They can tell you what you can do to finish your enrollment and still get covered for 2014,” said the Dec. 24 post on healthcare.gov.

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• Valerie Richardson can be reached at vrichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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