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Koch brothers group launches ads thanking vulnerable Dem senator

Koch brothers group launches ads thanking vulnerable Dem senator
© Greg Nash

A group linked to the conservative mega-donors Charles and David Koch is preparing a digital advertising campaign in support of a centrist Democratic senator who backed a key piece of legislation their foundation supports.

Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is readying the ad blitz thanking North Dakota Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Mastercard - Dem leaders back smaller COVID-19 relief bill as pandemic escalates Grassley suggests moderate Democrats for next Agriculture secretary Major unions back Fudge for Agriculture secretary MORE, who was one of several Senate Democrats to support the recent passage of a bill rolling back Dodd-Frank regulations, mostly on community banks, CNBC reported on Friday.

Heitkamp is up for reelection this year, and was one of five Senate Democrats who trailed their GOP challengers in a SurveyMonkey poll in March.

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The move from the Koch network comes just months after it attacked Heitkamp with a $450,000 ad buy for opposing the GOP's tax-reform bill, which was signed into law in December.

"AFP is committed to working with lawmakers — regardless of party — to advance common sense reforms that help people improve their lives. At the same time, we will continue to hold members who voted against this crucial reform accountable," spokesman Tim Phillips told CNBC.

"While we don't agree with Sen. Heitkamp on everything, particularly her vote against tax relief, we commend her for taking a stand against the leaders of her party to do the right thing. We hope to find common ground and work with Sen. Heitkamp on other issues moving forward including making tax relief permanent," he added.

Heitkamp was the only Democratic senator to be invited to the White House for the signing of the bill rolling back the banking regulations, while Trump praised "a lot of great Democrats" — including Heitkamp and Sens. Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterOvernight Defense: Trump loyalist to lead Pentagon transition | Democrats ask VA for vaccine distribution plan | Biden to get classified intel reports Senate Democrats press VA for vaccine distribution plan President is wild card as shutdown fears grow MORE (Mont.), Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyBiden and Schumer face battles with left if Democrats win big Harris walks fine line on Barrett as election nears The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by JobsOhio - Showdown: Trump-Biden debate likely to be nasty MORE (Ind.) and Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerDefense policy bill would create new cyber czar position Sweeping financial crimes bill to hitch a ride on defense measure Bipartisan, bicameral group unveils 8 billion coronavirus proposal MORE (Va.) — for introducing the bill along with Republicans last year.

“We’ve kept a lot of promises,” Trump said last week at the bill's signing. “This is truly a great day for Americans, and a great day for workers and small businesses across the nation.”