Condoleezza Rice defends Senate candidate Sullivan in new American Crossroads ad

On Saturday, American Crossroads, the super-PAC founded by Karl Rove, released an ad defending Republican Senate candidate Dan Sullivan against questions about his Alaska residency. The commercial is narrated by his former boss, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, saying that Sullivan’s time away from the state, for which he is being questioned, was spent in the service of his country.

“Dan Sullivan is tireless in the defense of his country,” Rice says. “He showed that in his service in the military and his service in the White House and the State Department.”

On Saturday, American Crossroads filed a $191,757 expenditure on the Alaska race with the FEC. It’s unclear how much of that money is going to this ad.

A pro-Mark Begich super-PAC has aired two ads questioning Sullivan’s residency. The last one called his claims “fishy.” Sullivan, a Marine, moved to Alaska in 1997 before moving to D.C. in 2002 to work in the White House and the State Department under Rice. While in D.C., he bought a house in Maryland and said that it was his primary residence. He was called to active duty from 2004 to 2006. He came back to the state full time in 2009 to become Alaska’s Attorney General and then the state’s Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources.

That same year he claimed he was a non-resident when he applied for a fishing license because he had not lived in the state for the previous 12 consecutive months. Hence the title of the attack ad.

A group of veterans gathered in Anchorage last week in defense of Sullivan. Many of them said that they too had to travel while serving and they feel that an attack on Sullivan is an attack on them.

Sullivan himself has not yet himself released an ad responding.

The fact that American Crossroads has entered the race is significant because Sullivan is in a three-way contested primary and is not yet the party nominee. Two other candidates, Joe Miller and Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell, are still running for that spot.

Meantime, the National Republican Senatorial Committee has released a rather dramatic ad, tying recent comments by Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor about his opponent to the pro-Begich super-PAC ads. “From Arkansas to Alaska Democrats are attacking a noble act: military service,” the ad says.

To be clear, nobody has outright attacked Sullivan for being in the military.

Contact Amanda Coyne at


20 thoughts on “Condoleezza Rice defends Senate candidate Sullivan in new American Crossroads ad

  1. Garand Fellow

    This is the singular Alaska political ad of 2014. It will be just as timely in November as it is today. The ad is compelling, honest, succinct, and altogether interesting. It speaks to all Alaskans, not just Republicans of course. I hope that even Democrats will admit that it is brilliant.

    If Begich would now come up with a comparable ad with Obama speaking for him the election would be over today!

  2. Mae

    So can I get a job with L48 Dan’s campaign, whereby I cruse websites with stories about him and write stuff about him?

    Even his supporter(s) don’t talk about where L48 Dan is on the issues.

    I don’t like Alaskas Son, but what’s worse? Oh, a guy claiming he knows Alaskans when Condi is speaking for him.

    Nice place in Maryland. Who choose the curtain color and wood for the hard wood floors? I ask because that is about as close to Alaska ol L48 Dan is…

  3. Southside Sam

    The highest obligation and privilege of citizenship is that of bearing arms for one’s country.

  4. PhD

    The most significant factor related to this story and tv ad is that Crossroads has decided to engage on behalf of Dan Sullivan in a contested three way primary. Likewise, if you click on the link in the story there is also a web ad produced by the Bational Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee supporting Sullivan. It is obvious that Sullivan, primarily through his fundraising strength, has proven to be the front runner. That coupled with his military service and an impressive resume, people are locking in to support him. I was at the Outdooes Show in Wassila this weekkend and Sullivan had a booth. I was shocked at the people flocking around the booth to learn more and share theoir words of support. Bo wonder Begich is hurling negatives at Sulloivan and ignoring the other candidates. Begich has figured out that Sullivan is the only one who can beat him. I wish that Mead and Joe would man up and support Dan’s candidacy. They are both good people and fine candidates but all they are dooing now is helping Begich.

  5. GOP49

    Secretary Rice’s endorsement of Dan Sullivan is claasy and sticks to his many attributes that will make him a fine senator. This is a pleasant contradiction to the negative campaigns being run by Begich and Treadwell. Joe Miller for the most part has been positive with the exception of his disappointment of not getting the endorsement from the Club for Growth. I find Sullivan’s upbeat campaign that seems based on who he is, what he believes and the issues of the campaign are appreciated and enlightening. Begich is a professional politician, has never served in the military and isn’t really very bright. Sullivan, Treadwell and Miller are all a lot smarter and better educated than Begich. Looks like the race is quickly becoming a race between Sullivan and Begich which should be an easy choice for most thinking Alaskans.

  6. Eagle River Voter

    I like the fact that this blog posts many of the tv ads. I seldom watch television and enjoy the ads so this works for me. Surpriisingly, these PACs have entered the race, on both sides, much earlier than expected. The Republicans, Miller and Tredwell, are chmping at Sullivan along with Begich. That tells me that Sullivan is the indisputablr front runner. All this talk about residency is a huge waste of time and diverts the attention away from the real issues of the campaign. Maybe that’s exactly what Begich is trying to do. All I know for certain is that this race is going to get a lot uglier as time goes on. You can even see this from the comments on this article. The supporters of the respective candidates are angry already.

  7. Mae

    L48 Dan is soooooooo lower 48.

    Great military record L48 Dan. No need to shove it every bodies face.
    Nice place in Maryland.

    So what is your stand on issues?
    Or are all we gonna get is you defending your L48 status with a uniform on?

    I tire of cheechakos.

  8. Lynn Willis

    I suggest we don’t get so exercised about this senate race. Good Lord, we are a population of 700,000. That is about the same as Memphis Tennessee. Our 700,000 population entitles us to but one US Representative out of a current total of 435 Representatives in the US Congress. Sure we get two Senators but they only represent 350,000 people each which is nothing compared to the big guns from the populated states. After Ted Stevens we now have almost zero influence on the national political scene and especially the presidential election. No US Senator from Alaska is going to be able to accomplish that much for years if ever. This race is all about national party agendas that could care less about Alaska. These ads are designed to make us feel important. Wait a month after the election and see how important we really are in the big picture.

  9. Joseph

    Norah, you just need to calm down. Scottie isn’t a chauvinist. He’s a good big-hearted Veteran. That’s all this is saying.

  10. Norah

    So what, women don’t get a voice? More of Dan Sullivan’s campaign trying to silence women, well I won’t have you silence me anymore. I get it “Frank G.”, you’re just trying to limit my free speech! Chauvinist pig, you’re just like your boss Dan! Don’t tell me how to use my body! So what if I find Veterans attractive! At least I can spell, unlike you and your other character ‘Vet’.

  11. Mark

    Combat Veterans of America Endorsed Joe Miller. I wonder why they did not endore Dan Sullivan? Perhaps it’s his membership on the Council on Foriegn Relations?

  12. Frank G.

    This television commercial is a remarkably nice ad. While I have never served in the military, I respect and honor those who do. Norah’s comment saddened me because she is either ridiculously partisan, unpatriotic or is of limited intellect. The point of this whole debate on residency is ridiculous. I am disappointed that Begich’s campaign seems hell bent on slinging mud and diminishing the character of his opponent Dan Sullivan. After nearly six years in the senate, Begich seems to have a limited record to run on. The fact is that he has been a big supporter of President Obama’s and that isn’t going to set well with Alaskans. Face it, this Democratic administration has been very uncaring anbd their policies are detrimental to our state.
    Begich and Treadwell, both professional politicians without military service, seem to be very much alike. We’ll be done with Treadwell in the primary and hopefully with Begich in the general. In the meantime gentlemen, let’s stick to the issues and try our best to limit our name calling and mud throwing. Please, stick to the issues. Remember, most Alaskans were born elsewhere, including Ted Stevens and most of our governors.

  13. Vet

    As far as I’m concerned, Begich is a disgusting, gutless wonder. He himself didn’t care emough about his country to serve, yet has the adacity to criticize Mr. Sullivan for his service to his country. Begich deserves to be drummed out of office. He’s nothing but a selfish “what’s in it for me” politician. I’m supporting Dan Sullivan.

  14. Norah

    Didn’t you know that Military Service automatically qualifies you to be in the Senate? It seems like whatever attack comes on Dan is instantly rebuked by the fact that he’s a Veteran. Veterans are the only people in the country as far as I’m concerned. If my boyfriend was a Veteran, I know he’d please me more sexually.

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