Ad battle begins in Senate race with GOP group American Crossroads criticizing Jack Conway

08/25/2010 07:51 AM

UPDATED: The group American Crossroads, formed by Karl Rove and chaired by Inez banker and former Republican National Committee chairman R. Michael Duncan, launched the first ads of the Kentucky U.S. Senate race that criticize Democratic candidate Jack Conway for not opposing the health care reform bill.

Specifically, the ad says Conway has gone “the wrong way” by voicing his support for the health care bill, which Congress passed in March. In addition it criticizes Conway, Kentucky’s attorney general, for not joining 13 other attorneys general in a lawsuit challenging the legislation.

Rove, the former senior adviser to President George W. Bush, helped start the group as a political organization under section 527 of the IRS code, which allows it to spend money on political “issue” ads. It has since been restructured as a 501©(4).

Here’s the spot, first recorded and posted by liberal blogger John Amato:

Conway has voiced his support for the health care bill, which he says makes crucial improvements to the system. But that legislation hasn’t been popular in Kentucky. A cn|2 Poll showed that about a quarter of voters picked repealing that legislation from a list of goals that they most want to see Congress achieve this fall.

UPDATED: The Conway campaign issued a statement Wednesday, saying American Crossroads was doing the heavy lifting for Republican candidate Rand Paul during a time in which Paul has stumbled on the issue of fighting drug abuse.

“After Rand Paul said the growing drug epidemic is not a ‘real pressing issue,’ he now needs a bailout from the very kind of establishment group he once railed against,” said Allison Haley, Conway’s spokeswoman,in the statement. “But no amount of shadow funds can hide the fact that Rand Paul doesn’t understand the drug epidemic and doesn’t understand Kentucky.”

- Ryan Alessi


Subscribe to email updates.

Subscribe and get the latest political intelligence delivered to your inbox.