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House candidate Matt Miller combines policy plan, money plea

House candidate Matt Miller combines policy plan, money plea
Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Beverly Hills) is retiring and one of the candidates to replace him, Matt Miller, has released a proposal to cut healthcare costs and accompanied it with a money pitch. (Associated Press)

Most candidates talk about what they would do if elected and many of those seeking a coveted office need to ask for campaign money.

Matt Miller, a Democrat and one of 21 candidates vying to replace Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Beverly Hills), has killed two birds with one campaign stone: He offers his solutions to spiraling healthcare costs and asks for contributions to help him get across his ideas.

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Miller, a journalist and public radio talk show co-host, released a YouTube video this week that shows him wearing a neck brace to illustrate his point about out-of-control healthcare costs. Purchased at a drug store, Miller says, the device would cost about $20. But a patient who obtains the brace at a hospital would pay more like $150, Miller asserts in the video.

He runs through some of his strategies for reining in expenses and asks for contributions to help him disseminate his ideas. A fundraising letter emailed to supporters around the same time attempts a similar linkage.

"I need your help to make sure voters across the 33rd District see my ideas, too," the email says. "Will you donate $100, $200 or even $2,600 (!!) to help us win this race and get serious about reducing health care costs?"

The ideas aren't especially new but together they represent a different approach, Miller says, that was overlooked in the debate over the Affordable Care Act.

Miller has posted his proposals online.

The health costs proposals are the first policy ideas released by Miller, who is hoping to be one of the top two vote-getters in the June 3 primary. Under the state's new election system, those candidates will advance to the November ballot, regardless of any party affiliation.

Twitter: @jeanmerl

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