COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. — The Koch brothers and their 700 major donors are doubling down on their Senate spending, launching million dollar-plus ad buys to help Republicans in three battleground states.
Freedom Partners Action Fund, the main super-PAC for the donor network helmed by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, is launching three separate seven-figure ad campaigns to help Republican senators competing in the Nevada, Ohio and Pennsylvania races.
The Koch network has already spent more than $24 million in Senate races and has advertising reservations for the fall totaling at least $42 million.
“Whether it’s putting the special interests before taxpayers’ interest, or making tough times even harder with harmful tax-and-spend policies, it’s clear that Catherine Cortez Masto, Ted Strickland and Katie McGinty would only continue the failed policies that rig the system for the well-off and well-connected," said Koch network spokesman James Davis, who is here attending the Kochs' summer donor retreat at a luxury resort in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
"These policies represent everything that’s wrong with Washington and these candidates are promising more of the same."
In Nevada, the Koch network is making a $1.2 million TV and digital buy titled “Nineteen” to support Republican Rep. Joe Heck. Nineteen is the average hourly earnings of an Uber driver in Nevada, the network said in a statement.
"The ad underscores the influence of special interests on Catherine Cortez Masto and how out of touch she is with hard working Nevadans," the Koch network added.
An additional $1.4 million TV and digital buy in Ohio — aimed to help incumbent Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanWicker: Biden comments on Ukraine caused 'distress' for both parties These Senate seats are up for election in 2022 Biden calls Intel's B investment to build chip factories a tool for economic recovery MORE (R) — shows how, as governor, Democrat Ted Strickland "ransacked the state’s budget surplus and then raised taxes and fees on Ohioans who were already struggling to make ends meet," the network said.
And in Pennsylvania, the Koch network is running a $1.3 million TV and digital attack ad that paints the Democratic candidate in the state's Senate race, Katie McGinty, as a public official who steered subsidies to the "favored few at the expense of Pennsylvania taxpayers."
The massive Koch investment in saving the Republicans' control over the Senate goes some way to making up for the network's decision not to support Donald TrumpDonald TrumpHeadaches intensify for Democrats in Florida Stormy Daniels set to testify against former lawyer Avenatti in fraud trial Cheney challenger wins Wyoming Republican activists' straw poll MORE in the race for the White House against Democrat Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNo Hillary — the 'Third Way' is the wrong way The dangerous erosion of Democratic Party foundations The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats see victory in a voting rights defeat MORE.
The Koch network, despite pressure from a number of its donors, has decided it won't spend a penny of its $250 million political and policy budget for the 2016 cycle on supporting Trump, the Republican nominee.