Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
April 19, 2014

Arizona: Democrats Outspending Republicans On TV in 8th District

Six days out from the special election in Arizona’s 8th district, television spending in Tucson has surpassed the $3 million mark.

Those supporting Democrat Ron Barber have outspent their Republican counterparts backing veteran Jesse Kelly by about $200,000, according to sources who track television buys in the state. The two candidates are locked in a tight race to replace former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D).

These are the television spending projections supporting Barber through election day on June 12:

  • The Barber campaign has spent $729,000.
  • House Majority PAC has spent $514,0000.
  • The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has spent $473,000.
Those combine for a total of about $1.7 million.

On the Kelly side, the TV bets are big, but not as big.

  • The Kelly campaign has spent $558,000.
  • Citizens United has spent $127,000.
  • The National Republican Congressional Committee is on track to spend $825,000.

Those combine for a total of about $1.5 million.

Two new television ads have surfaced in these media buys in recent days. The Barber campaign went up with a positive spot today that stressed his political moderation and his interest in small businesses.

On Tuesday, the NRCC put up a negative ad against Barber, seeking to tie him to President Barack Obama and his policies. It goes as far as to call Barber a “rubber stamp.”

Interestingly, the ad includes an image of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). Barber was recently noncommittal on whether he would support Pelosi as his party’s leader if he comes to Congress.

Late today, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel sent an email to DCCC supporters referencing the NRCC ad and calling for donations.

“We just got word that National Republicans are pouring big money into vicious, last minute attack ads against our Democratic candidate, Ron Barber, to try and take Gabby Giffords’ seat,” he wrote. “We can’t let right-wing Republicans dominate the airwaves in the final days of this critical campaign.”

The DCCC has not exactly waged a positive campaign.

Barber formerly worked Giffords and she readily endorsed his campaign. The former Congresswoman is set to attend a get-out-the-vote concert on Saturday in downtown Tucson.

Roll Call rates this race a Tossup.

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