Senate Majority PAC names Schumer ally as new leader

Senate Majority PAC names Schumer ally as new leader
© Greg Nash
J.B. Poersch, a confidant of Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerCan Mueller be more honest than his colleagues? Throwing some cold water on all of the Korean summit optimism House Republicans push Mulvaney, Trump to rescind Gateway funds MORE (D-N.Y.), has been tapped to lead Senate Majority PAC, a super PAC that fundraises to help Democrats win control of the Senate.
 
Poersch has been acting as a strategist for the group while managing the political division of public affairs giant SKDKnickerbocker in Washington.
 
Now, as the super PAC's president, Poersch faces an uphill battle against Republicans in the 2018 midterm elections. Many Senate Democrats in conservative-leaning states that Trump won — such as Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampRand's reversal advances Pompeo Overnight Health Care: Teen pregnancy program to focus on abstinence | Insurers warn against short-term health plan proposal | Trump VA pick faces tough sell Overnight Defense: Pompeo clears Senate panel, on track for confirmation | Retired officers oppose Haspel for CIA director | Iran, Syria on agenda for Macron visit MORE in North Dakota and Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyRand's reversal advances Pompeo Overnight Defense: Pompeo clears Senate panel, on track for confirmation | Retired officers oppose Haspel for CIA director | Iran, Syria on agenda for Macron visit Pompeo headed for confirmation after surprise panel vote MORE in Indiana — are up for reelection. 
 
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Poersch became close with Schumer while he served as the executive director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) from 2005 to 2010, when the New York senator chaired the committee.
 
And he is familiar with tough races: In 2012, Poersch helped Donnelly in his upset Senate win, lending a hand with strategy and ad producing. Throughout his last six years at SKDK, he has created advertisements for the DSCC, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Democratic Governors Association and House Majority PAC.
 
“Senate Majority PAC has helped elect Democrats to the Senate for six years,” Poersch said Monday morning in the statement announcing his appointment. 
 
“This mission is more important than ever if Democrats are going to have necessary numbers to fight the Trump agenda,” he continued. “We need a comprehensive [independent expenditure] effort that includes television, digital and grassroots effort to combat the GOP’s ‘dark money’ cash advantage.”
 
Senate Majority PAC raised more than $91 million during the two-year 2016 campaign cycle, and spent upward of $75 million during that same period on independent expenditures — a term for money spent on directly advocating for or against a candidate.
 
The group aims to be a direct contrast to big-money machines on the Republican side, such as similar committees run by the billionaires Charles and David Koch.
 
Two top aides to former Senate Democratic Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidAfter Dems stood against Pompeo, Senate’s confirmation process needs a revamp GOP poised to advance rules change to speed up Trump nominees Dems walk tightrope on Pompeo nomination MORE (Nev.), who retired in 2016, will continue as senior advisers of the group: Susan McCue and Rebecca Lambe, who founded the group with Poersch in 2012.