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American Crossroads announces 11 Senate targets

1. American Crossroads, the conservative independent organization promising to spend upwards of $50 million on races this fall, has settled on 11 targeted Senate contests, according to sources briefed on the group's plans.

In each of the 11 races -- in Ohio, Missouri, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arkansas, Colorado, Kentucky, Florida, Illinois and Washington state -- American Crossroads plans to hire a media consultant and pollster tasked with crafting a tailored message.

The group's first foray into a race came earlier this week in Nevada when it dropped about $120,000 on a week-long television buy that hits Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on his support for the $787 billion economic stimulus plan.

Wilson Grand is handling the ads for American Crossroads in Nevada while Jan van Lohuizen of Voter/Consumer Research, who handled polling for President George W. Bush's 2004 re-election bid, will play the same role for the conservative group in the Silver State.

Sources familiar with the group, which was formed in the spring with the blessing of major GOP figures including Karl Rove and Ed Gillespie, cast the selection of Senate targets as evidence that it is beginning to function in the way it was imagined.

As further evidence, they point to the hires of Carl Forti, a former political director for Mitt Romney's 2008 presidential camp, to a similar role for American Crossroads as well as Chris McInerney, another former Romney aide, as the organization's research director.

It's not yet clear whether American Crossroads can come close to meeting the $50 million fundraising goal it set for itself. In its first financial filing, the group showed just over $1 million raised.

Democratic strategists moved last week to counter the potential impact of American Crossroads by forming Commonsense Ten, although whether -- and how -- that organization will be funded remains very much up in the air.

2. Members of the South Carolina Democratic Party's executive committee are meeting Thursday to determine whether to call for a new election following Alvin Greene's (D) out-of-nowhere win over former state Rep. Vic Rawl in last week's Senate Democratic primary.

Rawl has requested a new election, citing voting irregularities; Thursday, he will be making his case to the 92 members of the state party's executive committee. If the party opts to push for a new primary, it's unclear when such a contest would be held. The state's regularly scheduled runoff will take place June 22.

The state election commission announced Wednesday that it will not investigate Greene's win.

Still, questions continue to swirl around Greene's surprise victory.

House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) has said that Greene was a "plant," and Clyburn told CNN's Candy Crowley on Sunday: "I saw in the Democratic primary elephant dung all over the place." Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington has asked state Attorney General Henry McMaster (R) to investigate how Greene got the $10,440 to pay the state filing fee. And on Tuesday, a Republican state legislator asked the state police to conduct their own investigation.

The debate over how -- and whether -- Greene won the race fairly is somewhat moot. Whoever emerges as the Democratic nominee will face Sen. Jim DeMint (R) and start the general election as a major underdog.

3. An independent organization funded by cash from organized labor and the Democratic Governors Association is up with a new ad hitting California GOP gubernatorial nominee Meg Whitman.

The ad, funded by a group called California Working Families, attacks Whitman for not voting before she was a candidate for office. "Meg Whitman wants our vote," says the commercial's narrator. "But for 28 years, she didn't bother to vote."

The remainder of the spot is audio of Whitman jousting with a reporter who repeatedly asks her why she didn't vote. "I should have, and I didn't," she says again and again.

The ad comes as Whitman continues to flood the airwaves with ads funded by her massive personal fortune. She recently dumped another $20 million into her campaign, bringing her total investment to more than $91 million.

It remains to be seen how effective Whitman's spotty voting record will play in the general election fight against state Attorney General Jerry Brown (D). Whitman endured a similar attack during the GOP primary from state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner. She won that race going away -- thanks to her free-spending on television ads.

4. Ohio Democratic Rep. Betty Sutton is in a real race against wealthy care-dealer Tom Ganley, according to a new poll conducted for the National Republican Congressional Committee.

Ganley stood at 44 percent to 41 percent for Sutton in the Public Opinion Strategies survey.

Ganley was a surprise recruit for the NRCC, abandoning a quixotic Senate challenge to former Rep. Rob Portman (R) to take on Sutton who was first elected in 2006.

Ganley's personal wealth -- he has loaned his campaign more than $2 million -- and Sutton's relative meager fundraising (just over $300,000 on hand as of mid-April) have combined to create an unlikely opportunity.

Despite the fact that President Obama carried the district by 15 points in 2008, the POS poll showed President Obama's approval rating at a less stellar 49 percent positive / 44 percent negative.

Sutton has not faced a serious race since she won her seat in 2006, winning both her races with better than 60 percent of the vote.

5. Indiana Democrats will decide their nominee today in the special election race to replace former Rep. Mark Souder (R), who retired last month following revelations that he'd had an affair with a part-time staffer.

Retired physician Thomas Hayhurst, who lost to Souder 54 percent to 46 percent in 2006, is the likely nominee; Democrats already nominated him on May 4 for a fall rematch against Souder, two weeks before the eight-term congressman stepped down.

Last weekend, Republicans selected state Sen. Marlin Stutzman, who came up short in his bid for the Republican Senate nomination last month.

Citing the cost of holding a separate election, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) set the special for the same day as the general election: November 2. That means that the candidates facing off for the seat will appear twice on the ballot. The special will determine who fills out Souder's term until Jan. 3 until the general election winner is sworn in to the 112th Congress.

Hayhurst is well-funded -- showing $233,000 on hand as of mid-April. But with the national environment favoring Republicans -- and in a district that went for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) 56 percent to 43 percent in 2008 -- it's Stutzman's race to lose.

By Chris Cillizza  |  June 17, 2010; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  | Tags: Alvin Greene, American Crossroads, California governor's race, Harry Reid, Meg Whitman, Sen. Jim DeMint, South Carolina Democratic primary  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Rob Simmons' covert Senate campaign?
Next: Is Colorado's Ken Buck the next Sharron Angle?



Posted by: xaajiga1 | June 17, 2010 10:11 PM | Report abuse


To paraphrase that great American academic Dean Vernon Wormer:

"ignorant, stubborn and stupid is no way to go through life, son."

Posted by: BobSanderson

Thank you Bob. Bestest post of the day.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | June 17, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

I wonder whether American Crossroads is making the right move by pouring money into Ohio in an attempt to elect Rob Portman to the Senate. Portman has more money on hand than, I think, any other non-incumbent Senate candidate. I'm not sure he needs the boost as much as some other candidates might. But then again, Ohio is seen as one of the few areas where a Senate seat might go from red to blue this year, so maybe American Crossroads is figuring that every little bit helps.

Haha, "wealthy care dealer." I'll say this about Tom Ganley: I never realized just how successful the guy's business was until I started actually looking for his dealership's name on license plate frames after he announced his candidacy. Those things are everywhere.

Posted by: GJonahJameson | June 17, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Ahhh -- when conservatives are shown for what they are??? NAME CALL AND CHANGE THE SUBJECT!!!!

nothing like a little ad hominem attack to make one feel righteous

Posted by: John1263 | June 17, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Bob Sanderson

You are trying to push a lie onto the American People.

Everyone understands you got away with it in 2008.

See - that seems to be the problem now - because you got away with it once - and lied to the people and got them to vote for your side once - you think you can do it again and again and again.

The American People in 2008 DID NOT vote for Obama's far left agenda.

It is that simple.

The people voted for bipartisanship - which means COMPROMISE ARRIVING AT CENTRIST POLICIES.

Then they got a commitment from your side to be post-racial - which DOES NOT mean false charges of racism or talk of "proxy issues" or any other crap like that.


You are out of touch with American -

Your side MAY have set out to fool America, but you only ended up fooling yourself.

Somehow you have convinced yourselves that this is proper conduct in a democracy - it is not.

Somehow you have convinced yourselves that lying is the way to push through a FAR LEFT WING AGENDA - it is not.

Anyway - I have been patient with you - if you continue with your line of talk I have to come to the conclusion that you are unable to understand this simple reasoning.


Posted by: 37thand0street | June 17, 2010 11:19 AM | Report abuse

The press, as usual, misses the big picture. rove and his anti-American crowd have been working on a big picture plan to revert the US to the early 19th century for decades. The idea started with the realization by conservatives in the 1960s that there was no political way to destroy the hated reforms of the first half of the 20th century, because THOSE REFORMS WORKED SO WELL. Hard to get rid of things like social security, protections for workers and such when they made life better for almost every man woman and child in the nation. So what is a conservative ideaologue zealot to do? STARVE THE BEAST!!! Run up deficits so enormous, whittle away at government protections, whittle away at civil rights, whittle away at environmental protection, all under the radar as much as possible, and all lied about using euphemistic language about "defending freedom" and such drivel.

So here we are. republicons drove up masive unecessary debt, and now that they just about collapsed the world economy with their policies of the first half of this century, here we are.

Make no mistake. If republicons get control --- we will see nationally the horror that is being visited on New Jersey. That enormous tub of lard christy vetoed a miniscule tax increase on millionaires - but he cut lunch programs and preschool for working class children. He cut school budgets to the bone -- no more art, music, gym, or extra curricular activities in NJ, and classes all at or above 30 kids.....He cut environmental agencies to the point where they might as well not exist, in short he cut anything except taxes for working people, and refused to even consider taxing a handfull of hyper rich. He is the poster child for what republicons want to do to us all.

Posted by: John1263 | June 17, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

perhaps you have not noticed that H.C.
is not front and center, as hard as the right
might hope, in today's headlines when
we hear Rs falling all over themselves
defending BP in today's hearing. Talk about
insanity, defending BP and demanding that
WE Apologize to BP. And Rs are Ashamed to
collect $20 Bln from BP; maybe we should be
awarding BP the Congressional Medal.

Posted by: leichtman1 | June 17, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

perhaps you have not noticed that H.C.
is not front and center, as hard as the right
might hope, in today's headlines when
we hear Rs falling all over themselves
defending BP in today's hearing. Talk about
insanity, defending BP and demanding that
WE Apologize to BP.

Posted by: leichtman1 | June 17, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

R's go to the mat for BP:

Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) objected to two unanimous consent requests made by Democrats this morning: Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) proposed giving subpoena power to the oil spill commission and Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) proposed erasing the cap on oil companies' liability for damages.

Posted by: drindl | June 17, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Anyone who has any question about Harry Reid's Incompetence, stupidity, etc.--just
recall Reid's participation in the Healthcare reform Debacle/Lies/Bribery...
that resulted in Reid/Pelosi/Obama ramming this Garbage Obamacare bill down our throats.
Anyone who voted for ObamaCare needs to get Thrown Out.

Posted by: ohioan | June 17, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

drindl I agree he is behaving like a tool.

Posted by: BobSanderson | June 17, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

R Congressmen today Defending the Indefensible-BP.

Yea we need to apologize to BP, when hell freezes over Joe Barton.

Rand Paul, Sarah Angel, Michelle Bachman, and
now Joe Barton, R apologists for BP.

Posted by: leichtman1 | June 17, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

Karl Rove. The supposed king-maker. He was behind every bad decision former President George W Bush made. Rove, Cheney and Bush couldn't have hurt our country more, nationally and internationally,if they had planned it. Did they? Those of us who live in the targeted states need to get out and vote, vote, vote. No more Rove and company!

Posted by: njglea | June 17, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse


To paraphrase that great American academic Dean Vernon Wormer:

"ignorant, stubborn and stupid is no way to go through life, son."

Posted by: BobSanderson | June 17, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

dawd -- don't bother with Broder. At least half of the WaPo pundits are unreadable ancient zombies.

R's in Congress are weeping and rending their garments over POOR BP! BOOHOO!

'Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX), ranking member of the House Energy committee, where BP's CEO is testifying today, just said "It is a tragedy of the first proportion that a private corporation can be subjected to what I would characterize as a shakedown, in this case a $20 billion shakedown."

Posted by: drindl | June 17, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

He's a dyed in the wool republican, BobSanderson -- he doesn't even try to pretend otherwise.

"cast the selection of Senate targets as evidence that it is beginning to function in the way it was imagined. "

This is a joke. Any of us could 'select targets'. And I've raised close to a million myself for a candidate -- that's chicken feed.

Apparently the wingers are having more trouble fundraising than they expected.

Posted by: drindl | June 17, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

the only extremists in our political system are the Rs defending the indefensible BP today in Congress - who have an agenda way out of step with America

even Mark Haynes is saying the Rs whining about the $20 bln are absurd, Obama is not doing enough, Obama is doing too much they don't know what the heck they want Mark
Haynes just said on CNBC

Posted by: leichtman1 | June 17, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Did any of you watch Chris Matthews New Right? Pretty scary stuff. Would think even conservatives would be disturbed.
Anything Rove, the king of swiftboating, will be down, dirty and evil.
Unfortunately, too many people support that kind of politicing.

Posted by: kathlenec | June 17, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Did any of you watch Chris Matthews New Right? Pretty scary stuff. Would think even conservatives would be disturbed.
Anything Rove, the king of swiftboating, will be down, dirty and evil.
Unfortunately, too many people support that kind of politicing.

Posted by: kathlenec | June 17, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

The only real qustions this article raises are
1. why is karl rove not wearing a federal prison uniform?
2. WHO gave this group 50 millions?

Posted by: John1263 | June 17, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

its unbelievable that Rs would be whining about the $20 bln and demanding an apology to BP(Joe Barton). Yea we need to apologize to BP, when.h.freezes.over
Rand Paul, Sarah Angel,Michelle Bachman, and
now Joe Barton apologists for BP.

Posted by: leichtman1 | June 17, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Bob Sanderson


So, somehow, you want to discredit the other side ???

Mr. Sanderson - the only extremists in our political system are the leftists - who have an agenda way out of step with America.

We all understand that your side LIED AND DECEIVED their way through the 2008 election -

And we all understand that you obviously would prefer to continue to be able to DECEIVE THE NATION.

But you have been exposed.

You can take your bull and walk now.



Posted by: 37thand0street | June 17, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Addendum to "scrivener" post, below:

In case anyone wonders why the content of a "Fix" comment complimenting President Obama would be subject to apparent malicious, ideologically-driven censorship, here is the link:

Let me also offer this editorial opinion:

My essay elicited a comment from a poster who used the handle, "Letemdangle" -- as in, "Let him dangle."

I cannot prove it -- but I believe that is the attitude of a multi-agency cabal which appears to be bent on the internal subversion of the presidency of Barack Obama.

Some supporting evidence pointing in that direction:

Posted by: scrivener50 | June 17, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse


When are you going to write a single thorough post about the rise of the EXTREME RIGHT in America? Yes, these words go together, can be used by a prominent commentator such as yourself, are very relevant to today's political climate and are reshaping the Republican Party. Why are you avoiding them?

Do these words make any sense together: "conservative independent organization"?

Posted by: BobSanderson | June 17, 2010 9:58 AM | Report abuse


"Fix" readers:

When I tried to post a comment to this blog yesterday, I received a full-screen "comment submission error" message, stating that "too many comments have been submitted from you (sic) in too short a time." I had not submitted any previous comments.

I tried to re-post my comment, which complimented President Obama for his successful showdown with BP over the compensation fund issue. This time, I received a full-screen message stating that my comment was "received and is being held for the blog owner."

The comment never was posted.

I believe these messages were inserted into my data stream by a patently unconstitutional government surveillance and censorship regime, apparently being run out of the nation's 70-some Homeland Security- administered multi-agency "fusion centers" -- apparently using "information systems" defense contractors as ideologically-driven internet censors.

It is also possible that this covert censorship regime involves assets of the U.S. Air Force, which has asserted command and control over "cyberspace."

Please take the time to read my specific accounts of internet censorship in the USA:

Posted by: scrivener50 | June 17, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Threadjack Warning.

I will be gone all day and think the Gulf gusher deserves another round. Forgive me, please, for anticipating a "Fix" that may not be written.

BHO gave a disappointingly lofty, general, and flat speech two nights ago, But he had a good day yesterday. Thanks to the leverage of statutes in place he was able to extract a $20B escrow agreement from BP.

The thanks for the statutes in place go first to the RMN Administration which reacted to the Santa Barbara disaster with the creation of EPA and two statutes directly penalizing polluters, and to the GHWB 41 Admin for the statute it added after "Exxon Valdez".

BHO gets good marks for using them now as leverage rather than using them to chase behind BP years from now.

Also, Louisiana gets bad grades for preparedness, although there are excuses for them based on the nature of their coastline. In comparison, read this:

It is Louisiana's misfortune not to have barrier islands like TX, so Gulf interfaces with swamp/marsh.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 17, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

The Nazi Party is alive and well in this country and living in "American Crossroads." Another malignant outgrowth of the Bush Reich that exists solely to promote tax cuts for the wealthy and bottomless corporate welfare, screw the working people.

Posted by: Bushwhacked1 | June 17, 2010 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Ok, that's enough link monkey for now. back to work.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 17, 2010 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Tea Party calls for a Glenn Beck style advertiser boycott of Chris Matthews.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 17, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse


First you have to spend $120,000 in Nevada and make nice to Karl Rove. I'm willing to donate $10 to FULLOFIT, though.

Posted by: JakeD3 | June 17, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Care dealer? Really?

According to his site, Tom Ganley runs a chain of auto dealerships. That makes him a car salesman, or an auto dealer. Not a car dealer (that phrase doesn't sound right), and definitely not a care dealer.

Posted by: Blarg | June 17, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

The Dean is a freakin idiot. Yeah, let's go for the 1-2 combo of ignoring the oil spill AND trying to worsen the job situation. I nominate David Broder for the Alvin Greene award of the day. Someone who appears to be functionally retarded as well as seeming to be a Republican plant.

But hey, Broder isn't one of the 9.7% of the unemployed. Why should he give a crap?

Posted by: DDAWD | June 17, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

eeek! people like socio-fascist death panels!

Health care law reaches new high in popularity.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 17, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: DDAWD | June 17, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

yeah, what the hell? Have an election for a term that will be for two months, half of which will be while Congress isn't in session?

Posted by: DDAWD | June 17, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

#1-This is like the 5th story about American Crossroads that the Fix has done, and these guys can't even raise 2 million.
In other news, I am starting an independent orginization called Freedom United Liberty and Life Organization For Independent Times (or FULLOFIT) with the intent to elect people who agree with me. I am targeting all open senate seats. Now I would like equal share of media exposure that American Crossroads has received.

#2-This is going to blow back into the SC GOP's face I think. At first people thought this was funny, but American are VERY touchy about having their elections messed with. I could imagine that this will blow up in Demint's face, especially if it comes out that he or any of his people was involved in anyway. I think he should come out and denounce this and support the investigation.

#3-This wont' really kill Whitman but it is a sign of what is to come. This election will be very very ugly and I have a feeling that Brown wins if that is the case since he represents the devil that you know.

#4-A poll from the NRSC (or DSCC) should be taken with a 10 point bias. In that case I think Sutton will be just fine.

Posted by: AndyR3 | June 17, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Wealthy care dealer?

On a separate note, wouldn't it be funny if Stutzman won the general election and lost the special election? I guess that would make Hayhurst a Rep for about 15 minutes.

Posted by: JakeD3 | June 17, 2010 8:15 AM | Report abuse

“And what rough beast, its hour come round at last slouches toward (Miami Beach) to be born”

Posted by: thecannula | June 17, 2010 6:58 AM | Report abuse

I thought I would save CC and crew the trouble and provide the Fix with the latest in Rossi news.

Posted by: trep1 | June 17, 2010 6:50 AM | Report abuse

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