White House recruiting Hollywood stars for ObamaCare rollout

The White House is working to recruit Hollywood celebrities to help promote ObamaCare, a top celebrity political adviser told The Hill.

Trevor Neilson, a veteran of the Clinton White House, said he's in talks with the Obama administration and that his clients are "looking at ways to be involved."

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Neilson represents Eva Longoria, John Legend and many other stars as president of Global Philanthropy Group. His past clients have reportedly included Shakira and Madonna, and he has close ties to Bono and Bill Gates.

"I think the White House is very wise to identify partners to help market the Affordable Care Act," Neilson said Tuesday.

"Just like any good product, when people are aware of the many benefits it provides, there will be increased demand."

The Obama administration is working on ways to sell its signature healthcare law to the public over the next six months.

Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced Monday that she's in talks with the NFL to promote ObamaCare. The HHS has also reportedly reached out to the NBA.


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"We're having active discussions right now with a variety of sports affiliates" about both paid advertising and partnerships to encourage enrollment, Sebelius told reporters.

The White House has a lot to do before Oct. 1, when open enrollment begins in the new insurance marketplaces. Polls suggest that the uninsured public is in the dark about the federal benefits that will soon be available under the Affordable Care Act.

In addition, federal health officials are setting up more than 30 exchanges in states that refused to create their own.

Celebrity spokespeople for the law would help to connect key demographics — such as young people — to their new benefits. The participation of young, healthy men in the exchanges is especially vital for keeping the markets stable and premium prices low.

"It’s both about numbers and getting a healthy risk pool," Sebelius said of the need to enroll young people.

The White House did not respond to a request for comment.