Americans for Prosperity Spends Millions Opposing NC Dem Hagan

Wednesday, 12 Feb 2014 12:44 PM

By Lisa Barron

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Americans for Prosperity, the group co-founded by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, is spending millions of dollars to campaign against Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan in North Carolina.

AFP has doled out $8.2 million on TV, radio and Internet ads in an effort to defeat Hagan in the November election against her potential GOP challengers, reports Politico.

That is more than all Democratic outside groups have spent so far in every Senate race in the country combined, says Politico, citing sources who track media buys.

With Republicans hoping to gain at least six seats to take back the Senate, Hagan is seen as highly vulnerable in large part because of her outspoken support for Obamacare.

The latest Public Policy Polling survey found that only 39 percent of North Carolina voters approve of Hagan's job performance, slightly higher than the 38 percent of North Carolinians who approve of the healthcare law.

Another poll published last month showed the incumbent trailing both of her two leading Republican opponents, Thom Tillis, Republican speaker of the state House of Representatives, and tea party activist Greg Brannon, by as much as 7 percentage points.

Hagan, for her part, has taken to lashing out at the Kochs in interviews and campaign emails, reports the National Review.

In one January missive, she linked the Kochs to the weak jobs recovery, writing, "There are things in this election we're all working for: protecting Medicare, ensuring women have access to the healthcare they need, creating jobs, and growing our economy. The Koch brothers probably don't care about any of that."

In another, she said, "I think programs like Medicare and Social Security are more important than tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas. My job is to act in the interest of middle-class families, not the Koch brothers."

AFP has not said how much it plans to spend in North Carolina, but if it keeps up its current pace, it will spend more than $27 million there by Election Day, according to Politico.

"We're really in uncharted territory as far as the amount of money that is going to be spent here," Thomas Mills, a North Carolina-based Democratic political consultant, told the publication.

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