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Friday, October 23, 2015

Bloomberg Drops $1.5 Million in Northern Virginia State Senate Race

Not long after I spoke with Cam Edwards on NRA News yesterday about the $700,000 that Michael Bloomberg's Everytown for Gun Safety is dropping into the 10th State Senate District, the Washington Post reported that he is dropping over twice that amount - $1.5 million - in the 29th Senate District targeting GOP candidate Hal Parrish:
Less than two weeks before Election Day, Everytown for Gun Safety announced Thursday that it would spend $1.5 million in TV and online ads for Democrat Jeremy McPike. He is running against Manassas Mayor Harry J. “Hal” Parrish II (R) to succeed retiring Sen. Charles J. Colgan (D-Prince William).

A day earlier, Everytown said it would spend $700,000 on ads for Democrat Dan Gecker, who is battling Republican Glen Sturtevant to represent part of Richmond and the surrounding suburbs in the Senate. That seat is being vacated by retiring Sen. John C. Watkins (R-Powhatan).

The ad campaigns, featuring the father of a Roanoke TV journalist shot to death on the air in August, target the two seats considered most up for grabs in the 40-member Senate. Democrats need to pick up one seat to take control of the chamber and give Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) a chance for legislative success for the final two years of his term. The GOP enjoys an overwhelming majority in the House of Delegates.
The amount of money Bloomberg is dropping in is unprecedented.  The money he is putting in for one candidate in the 29th is almost as much as both candidates have raised combined.  It's all part of the anti-gun meme "Take out the NRA in their backyard".  Governor Terry McAuliffe all but admitted he has been coordinating with Bloomberg's group, though he denied speaking to Bloomberg himself:
Asked at a public appearance Thursday outside Richmond if he had spoken with Bloomberg about the ad buys, McAuliffe said no. But he responded coyly when a reporter asked if he’d had any contact with Bloomberg’s “people.”

“Oh, I didn’t say that, but I haven’t talked to Mayor Bloomberg,” McAuliffe said.
By the way, it is not illegal in state races for campaigns to coordinate with outside groups.

Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned summed it up pretty well in his post on this news:
Yes, it is possible for one rich asshole to buy power in our Republic if he has enough and is willing to spend enough to do it. Bloomberg seems able and willing. I’m sorry that’s the case, but it is just is. Grassroots is the only way we can counter it. But will it be enough? Will enough people step up?
NRA-ILA has a Campaign Field Representative, Thomas Bingham,  on the ground in the 29th District to coordinate volunteer efforts for gun owners.  You can contact him by email at Thomas@nrailafrontlines.com.

Hat tip to Sebastian.

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