The Koch Network is preparing to launch a multi-million dollar ad campaign across three swing-states in the hopes of bringing down key Democrats in the midterm elections.
Americans for Prosperity (AFP), a Koch-backed group, announced Wednesday that it would spend $820,000 in Wisconsin, $2.1 million in Missouri, and another $2 million in Tennessee, according to CNBC.
Sen. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, who has already faced $5 million in attack ads thus far, is outed for opposing the GOP tax bill and backing a $1.3 trillion spending bill in AFP’s latest ad.
“For Tammy Baldwin, it’s higher taxes and more spending. Higher sales taxes, higher income taxes, higher energy taxes, voting for $1.3 trillion in spending. We can’t afford Tammy Baldwin,” the ad states, praising Baldwin’s Republican opponent Leah Vukmir.
In Tennessee, the Koch network is going after former governor Phil Bredesen, who is now seeking a Senate seat, for spending $9 million on remodeling the governor’s mansion at the expense of taxpayers.
“While we struggled through a recession, Bredesen wasted 9 million taxpayer dollars upgrading his governor’s mansion, $4 million on a party cave, gilded bathrooms, and a kitchen worth two Tennessee homes,” the ad states. “Phil Bredesen lived the life, we paid the bill.”
Bredesen, who is running against Republican Marsha Blackburn, has already responded to the attack ad by claiming that he “balanced eight budgets without imposing an income tax or increasing the sales tax on Tennessee families.”
“He also worked diligently with the legislature to raise the tobacco tax to fund education and to close corporate tax loopholes that were siphoning resources away from public safety, health care, education, and other priorities,” Bredesen’s press secretary Alyssa Hansen said.
Bredesen himself responded Wednesday in an ad of his own, saying that “the attacks have started and now you have to make sense of it all.”
“Look, I’d rather be talking about ideas, about how to help Tennesseans,” he said. “So, if you’re tired of attacks and shouting, if you’re looking for common sense and getting things done, I’m applying for the job.”
Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri is also taking heat from the Koch brothers for her support of the Affordable Care Act and profiting off of government contracts.
“12 years in the Senate. A career politician. What has Sen. Claire McCaskill done for us?” the ad begins. “Washington has been good to McCaskill. Her husband made millions off fat government contracts. Millions for them, higher prices for us.”
AFP is joined by the Concerned Veterans for America (CVA), another Koch-funded group, in its ad campaign, with CVA spending nearly $2 million in ads against Sen. Baldwin.