Jack Conway went on ad binge before primary, spent on cross-country travel

07/23/2010 01:11 PM

The last-minute media blitz that helped Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Jack Conway narrowly win his primary against Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo cost Conway nearly half a million dollars.

Conway pumped more than $400,000 of his own money into the campaign in the waning days before the May 18 Democratic primary election. The campaign has paid Conway back for some of that amount.

The Democratic nominee’s advertising and overall spending strategy from before his primary victory until the middle of July was outlined in Conway’s most recent report to the Federal Election Commission, which posted the July quarterly report Friday morning.

For instance, Conway spent $3,730 on cross-country lodging, from Jenny Wiley State Park Resort in Kentucky, to Westin Hotels in San Francisco and Washington, D.C.

Earlier this week, cn|2 Politics dug into Conway’s opponent, Rand Paul, and his spending.

Here are some highlights of Conway’s report:

  • $475,825 spent on “media buys” by Media Strategies and Research between April 29 and May 14. The largest buy was for $200,000 on May 6, just under two weeks before the primary election on May 18.
  • Lodging was also a major expense for the Conway campaign. Two stays at a Westin Hotel, one in San Francisco and the other in Washington D.C. cost $875. Back in Kentucky, a stay and meal at Jenny Wiley State Park Resort was $241.
  • Also a stay at the Donovan House, an up-scale hotel profiled in the New York Times and trade magazines that is 1 mile from the White House and 2 miles from the U.S. Capitol.  A trip to the Harbor View Hotel in Edgartown, MA cost $2,139.
  • Conway’s primary event at the Marriott Louisville Downtown was $4,151, about $2,000 less than Paul paid for the Bowling Green Country Club.
  • Consultant Mark Riddle was paid $30,000 on May 27.
  • Campaign manager Jonathan Drobis was paid $16,019 over the reporting period, receiving $3,204 payments four times.
  • Conway spokeswoman Allison Haley was paid $8,400.
  • An e-mail list rented from Anna Lewis Strategies, LCC cost $3,250.
  • Only one Kentucky Democratic event was listed on Conway’s disbursement sheet, $1,000 for “event registration” with the Louisville/Jefferson County Democratic Party.
  • Digging up news articles cost the campaign $300 for a subscription to LexisNexis. And software from Google cost $2,500.

- Kenny Colston


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