Big outside money is pouring into the race for U.S. Senate in Virginia, and for one super PAC, “outside” means from across the country. Independence Virginia, a super PAC supporting former U.S. Senator and Gov. George Allen, the Republican candidate, reported Wednesday spending $1.5 million on ads opposing the Democratic candidate, former Gov. Tim Kaine.
Two weeks ago, casino magnate and super donor Sheldon Adelson, who lives in Las Vegas, gave Independence Virginia $1.5 million, according to the super PAC’s most recent donor disclosure report to the Federal Election Commission. Adelson and has family have topped $40 million in giving to conservative super PACs this election, making them No. 1.
But Adelson’s Las Vegas money isn’t the only contribution to have traveled a long way to Virginia. Texas homebuilder Bob Perry, another top super PAC donor, gave $1 million to Independence Virginia in August and September, which was just disclosed last week. Perry, who has given $20.5 million to conservative super PACs this election, is the third-biggest super PAC donor. Wyoming investor Foster Friess, another prolific donor, gave the group $10,000. Independence Virginia has spent $3.9 million this election, entirely on anti-Kaine ads.
The race to replace retiring Democratic Sen. Jim Webb has attracted more money than any other outside spending race, according to the Center for Responsive Politics — $33 million, not counting Wednesday’s Independence Virginia ad buys. The conservative nonprofit Crossroads GPS has reported spending $8 million backing Allen, making it the top outside spender in the race. Majority PAC, a super PAC supporting Senate Democrats, is in second place with $5 million, according to CRP.
In other outside spending news:
- Pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future reported spending $18.3 million on ads supporting Romney and opposing Obama. The Daily Disclosure reported on the ads, “Genuinely Cares” and “Better” Wednesday.
- Conservative super PAC American Crossroads reported spending $11.3 million on ads supporting Romney and opposing Obama. It released three anti-Obama ads: “Bow,” “At Stake” and “Survive.” “At Stake” stars actor Clint Eastwood, who famously talked to an empty chair at the Republican National Convention.
- Its sister nonprofit Crossroads GPS reported spending $3.3 million on pro-Romney/anti-Obama ads and an additional $1.1 million on ads opposing Rep. Joe Donnelly, the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Indiana.
- The conservative nonprofit Americans for Job Security reported spending $2.5 million opposing Obama.
- The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee reported spending $9.4 million opposing Republican candidates for U.S. House.
- The conservative nonprofit American Action Network reported spending $925,000 opposing Democrats in three U.S. House races. A full $628,000 was dedicated to ads opposing former NASA astronaut Jose Hernandez, the Democratic candidate in California’s 10th District.
- Majority PAC, a super PAC supporting Senate Democrats, reported spending $3 million opposing Republican candidates in Virginia, North Dakota, Montana and Wisconsin.
- House Majority PAC, a super PAC backing House Democrats, reported spending $2.6 million opposing Republicans in numerous House races. It released “About Values,” opposing Rep. Steve Southerland, R-Fla., on Wednesday.
- Americans for Tax Reform, a conservative nonprofit, released “Wrong Prescription for Florida,” which opposes Al Lawson, the Democratic candidate running for U.S. House against Southerland in Florida’s 2nd District.
- Planned Parenthood Votes released an ad opposing Rep. Denny Rehberg, the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Montana.
- Patriot Majority PAC, a liberal political action committee affiliated with the nonprofit Patriot Majority USA, released “Romney is Bain.”
- FreedomWorks for America, a conservative nonprofit, released 11 news ads: seven oppose Obama and Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate in Ohio, Florida, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Arizona, and four support the Republican candidates in several of those races.
- Conservative super PAC Let Freedom Ring USA, which released eight ads Wednesday, put out another four: “Stand Up for Your Faith” (with the Pennsylvania Catholics Network), “Mother Teresa,” “Persecuting” and “You Didn’t Build That.”
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