A deep-pocketed, out-of-state political action committee has announced it will target Sen. Lamar Alexander with a new radio ad campaign beginning this week, but the ad makes no mention of the senator's re-election effort or his newly announced primary opponent, Rep. Joe Carr.
The Senate Conservatives Fund is spending almost $46,000 to air a 60-second ad on Tennessee stations, beginning Aug. 22, challenging listeners to contact the senator and demand he not support a government funding bill that includes appropriations for implementing the Affordable Care Act. The group, which indicated last week it would be taking aim at the senator, spent more than $16 million working to elect conservative senators, such as Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, during the recent campaign cycle.
"Obamacare is a job killer, yet Lamar Alexander refuses to do what it takes to stop funding for this liberal train wreck," the ad's narrator says.
The radio spot then suggests listeners contact the senator's office and demand he not vote for an expected continuing resolution to fund government operations this fall. Like a resolution supported by both Alexander and Sen. Bob Corker in March, the funding bill is expected to include amounts for the implementation of the new health law.
The group has made similar ads buys targeted at Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. Graham is also up for re-election in 2014. Alexander has already begun spending money on his own campaign advertising, however—paying $180,000 for a television and radio ad buy last month.
In an emailed response to the new ad, Alexander emphasized his repeated votes to eliminate or repeal the health law.
"Obamacare should be dismantled and repealed," Alexander said. "I have voted at least 23 times on the Senate floor to do that. Our focus now should be on how we replace a historic mistake with a step-by-step reform of our health care delivery system that reduces costs, so more Americans can afford the health care they need."
Despite his criticism of the Affordable Care Act, Alexander offered no indication if he would actually consider casting a no vote against a future funding bill and risk the unlikely possibility of a government shutdown.
In July, Alexander and Corker requested the law be permanently delayed, along with the entirety of the Republicans in the Senate. Corker also made headlines last month when he called his colleagues' idea of blocking any funds including money for the new law "a silly effort" and said he saw it as not being a "very courageous" strategy.
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