Harry and Louise are back--and pitching health reform

If you have a grey hair or two on your head, you doubtless remember Harry and Louise, the hapless middle-class couple depicted in 1990s anti-reform ads mounted by health insurance industry. Harry and Louise, who slammed the Clinton health reform plan as a government hack job that would take away their health choices, were widely credited with helping to kill the Clintons' plans.

Now,  Harry and Louise are back--but this time, believe it or not, on the side of health reform. Pharmaceutical industry lobby PhRMA and consumer advocacy group Families USA have brought back the same two actors to make the new ads, only this time, they're singing a different tune on health reform's prospects: "A little more cooperation, a little less politics and we can get the job done this time," Louise says at the fictional couple's new kitchen table. (Apparently Louise Caire Clark, the real-life actor playing the wife, thinks President Obama will actually push reform through this time around.)

To be sure, anti-reform forces aren't going to take this lying down, so expect anti-reform ads striking at middle-class fears to hit the airwaves nationally in coming weeks. But it seems that if they want the real McCoy (OK, the real Harry and Louise), they're just out of luck.

To learn more about the return of H&L:
- read this Wall Street Journal health blog item