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With the Georgia Republican Senate runoff ending Tuesday, an outside group focused on eradicating wasteful government spending launched a TV ad against Democratic nominee Michelle Nunn.
The group, Ending Spending Action Fund, spent more than $200,000 to produce and place the ad, according to an independent expenditure report filed Sunday with the Federal Election Commission. It also spent more than $28,000 on opposition research.
The 30-second ad, which is running statewide and kicked off over the weekend, was timed to run just as either Rep. Jack Kingston or former corporate CEO David Perdue wins the Republican nomination and the general election officially begins. The seat in this Republican-leaning state is one of Democrats’ only pickup opportunities. Full story
Senate Majority PAC launched a TV ad Saturday aimed at the Republican vying for Michigan’s open Senate seat.
The Democrat-aligned super PAC’s spot, backed by a nearly $650,000 buy and running for two weeks, features three state residents criticizing former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land on issues including tax breaks for the wealthy and women’s health, while labeling Land a “career politician.” Full story
House Majority PAC announced Thursday it had placed a third round of television advertisement reservations worth $7.3 million.
The super PAC, which aims to elect Democrats to the House, made the reservations across across 13 media markets.
“As races across the country start to shape up, it is clear that we are well-positioned to have a successful cycle,” HMP Executive Director Alixandria Lapp said in a statement. “These early reservations will help our dollars go further and secure the air time we will need to pick up seats in November.”
Democrats must pick up a net of 17 seats to win the House majority — a difficult task this cycle. Party organizations, including the congressional campaign committees, are in the process of reserving airtime in many of the most competitive districts for the fall.
A super PAC spokesman declined to specify race targets, noting that many of those markets feature more than one House race.
HMP has now made $20 million in television airtime reservations for the 2014 elections. However, groups often release these reservations to the press as a means to communicate with other party entities about buying television ads in the same races.
These are the markets and values of the reservations:
The Club for Growth, a perpetual thorn in the side of many Republican operatives, took a hit Tuesday in Mississippi, where Sen. Thad Cochran survived a primary challenge despite a significant investment from the anti-tax group.
The Club for Growth’s super PAC arm spent $2.4 million against Cochran, according to figures compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics. That’s a significant chunk of the $3.8 million it’s expended so far this cycle against Republicans.
What’s more, the defeat of state Sen. Chris McDaniel means the club has now failed to topple arguably its top two GOP incumbent targets of the midterm cycle — Cochran and Rep. Mike Simpson. The club spent nearly $500,000 for Bryan Smith, who lost his May 20 challenge to the Idaho Republican.
The Senate Conservatives Fund launched a new TV ad in Mississippi on Tuesday, becoming the latest outside group to spend significant money on the state’s Republican Senate primary runoff.
With a week to go in the three-week-long race, the SCF’s political action arm expended $210,000 for a spot arguing “it’s time for a conservative change” from six-term Sen. Thad Cochran to state Sen. Chris McDaniel.
The outside help comes as both candidates have pushed to raise money of their own for the extended contest. Cochran benefited from a 250-person fundraiser at the National Republican Senatorial Committee last week that provided an $820,000 financial surge. Full story
In New York’s sprawling 21st District, a recent influx of more than $1 million from outside groups has catapulted a 29-year-old first-time candidate ahead of the two-time nominee in the Republican primary for this coveted seat.
American Crossroads alone has already made more than $750,000 in independent expenditures to boost former White House aide Elise Stefanik’s bid — the group’s only spending in a House primary so far in 2014.
The June 24 Republican primary pits Stefanik against Matt Doheny, a deep-pocketed businessman and repeat candidate.
Early on in the race, Doheny’s familiarity with local voters and track record of self-funding his campaigns gave him an advantage. But two outside groups have flooded the district’s airwaves in a way that sources say has thrown the momentum to Stefanik. Full story
Tom Steyer, the Democrats’ financial answer to the Koch brothers, has set his sights on specific Senate and gubernatorial races to spend the $100 million he’s earmarked for the midterm elections.
His super PAC, NextGen Climate Action, aims to promote candidates who support action to mitigate the effects of climate change. It was active in last year’s elections for Virginia governor and a vacant Senate seat in Massachusetts.
The group has now targeted the competitive Senate races in Colorado, Iowa, Michigan and New Hampshire, and the Florida, Pennsylvania and Maine gubernatorial contests. It will back the Democratic candidate in each case. Full story
A super PAC supporting Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in Kentucky is launching a TV ad on Wednesday against likely Democratic nominee Alison Lundergan Grimes.
With the state’s primaries Tuesday set to cement the general-election matchup between McConnell and Grimes, Kentuckians for Strong Leadership is immediately releasing a TV ad tying Grimes to liberals, Hollywood and President Barack Obama.
The new ad is the latest attempt by the group to define Grimes at the outset of the race. It’s already spent well more than $1 million on TV and radio ads before this latest ad, which the group announced is backed by a $575,000 expenditure and airing statewide on broadcast and cable through June 2. Full story
A super PAC supporting members of Congress targeted by the tea party is launching its second TV ad in Idaho on Thursday.
Defending Main Street PAC, led by former Rep. Steven C. LaTourette, R-Ohio, has now spent around $500,000 to help Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, who is facing a significant primary challenge.
In the group’s latest ad, a narrator labels Simpson a “conservative fighting for Idaho” and says he “supports tax cuts that lower energy costs and reduce our dependence on oil from hostile nations, while protecting and creating jobs at the Idaho National Labratory.” Full story
Two weeks before the primary, a super PAC that backs Republican women has entered a competitive House race in West Virginia.
Women Lead PAC had endorsed former International Trade Commissioner Charlotte Lane’s bid for the 2nd District in the Mountain State.
For the House GOP’s public efforts to elect more women to their conference, these past few months yielded mixed results.
Good news arrived on April 26, when state Del. Barbara Comstock and former Saratoga Springs Mayor Mia Love won GOP nominations for top House races in Virginia and Utah, respectively. But only five days earlier, another top female prospect, Florida Senate Majority Leader Lizbeth Benacquisto lost her special election primary to a self-funding businessman. Her defeat came only a couple months after another high-ranking local female candidate lost her primary in a different special election in Florida.
This mixed record underscores the difficult task ahead for House Republicans, who want to increase the number of women in their ranks — currently just 8 percent of the conference. But the House GOP’s campaign arm, the National Republican Congressional Committee, does not take sides in primaries, complicating the party’s efforts.
That puts the onus to win in a primary on the individual, female candidate. Full story
House Majority PAC, a super PAC that aims to elect House Democrats, has a new ad tying a GOP challenger in West Virginia to conservative businessmen David and Charles Koch.
The ad hits state Sen. Evan Jenkins, who is running against Rep. Nick J. Rahall II, D-W.V., in one of this cycle’s most competitive House races.
But Jenkins only makes a cameo in the super PAC’s ad. Images of the brothers — who spend heavily in politics — are featured in the spot for 26 seconds in the 30-second spot.
“The Koch brothers wouldn’t be billionaires, if they didn’t get what they paid for,” a narrator said of Jenkins. “In Washington, Evan Jenkins won’t work for us.”
House Majority PAC, a super PAC with the aim of electing House Democrats, announced its first round of television reservations for the fall.
The reservations, totaling about $6.5 million, are for “the final weeks of the election in 24 districts,” a news release stated.
The super PAC during the 2012 cycle made its first round of reservations in early July in partnership with the Service Employees International Union.
“By placing these reservations early, we will make our dollars go further and ensure we have the air time to effectively fight back against the flood of Koch brothers’ dollars,” House Majority PAC Executive Director Alixandria Lapp said in a statement.
The super PAC is on offensive in six Republican-held districts and on defense in 18 Democratic districts. Often, releasing ad reservations to the press is a means to telegraph to allies, like the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, how outside groups intend to spend money.
Below is a breakdown of the buys, categorized by offensive and defensive targets:
Senate Majority PAC, a outside group committed to electing Democrats to the Senate, released two new ads on Friday targeting races in Arkansas and Michigan. The spots are part of a multi-state campaign to counter massive advertisement spending from Americans for Prosperity, a group supported by conservative billionaires Charles and David Koch.
The spots argue that GOP Senate candidates, Rep. Tom Cotton of Arkansas and former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land, advance corporate interests over the economic well-being of two different demographic groups.
In Arkansas, the super PAC is targeting senior voters to boost vulnerable Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor’s chances of keeping his seat. The Senate Race in Arkansas is rated Tilts Republican by the Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.
“Corporate special interests are spending millions to smear Mark Pryor and elect Tom Cotton,” the narrator said. The ad goes on to accuse Cotton of wanting to give “billions in profits to insurance companies while costing seniors $6,000 more a year.”
With just days to go in the smash-mouth special election on Florida’s Gulf Coast, both parties are managing expectations ahead of what could be a narrow margin of victory.
The race to replace the late Rep. C.W. Bill Young, R-Fla., is the most competitive special election of the 2014 cycle. Neither party is exuding confidence about the contest for the swingy 13th District, and nearly anyone who claims to have seen an internal poll says this tossup race will go down to the wire. Full story