Put Alaska First, a super-PAC which supports U.S. Sen. Mark Begich, released another TV ad over the weekend focused on the Koch brothers and GOP challenger Dan Sullivan. This one is narrated by Alaska resident Todd Hoener, who lives in Ester, a small community outside of Fairbanks. The ad talks about how the Koch brothers, who own Flint Hills Refinery in Fairbanks, are shutting the refinery down and costing about 80 jobs. It claims that the Koch brothers are supporting Sullivan.
The claim is a stretch. Although the Kochs do support a group that has been attacking Begich on healthcare and a carbon tax, neither that group, nor any other group affiliated with the Kochs, has mentioned Sullivan by name nor have they contributed to his campaign.
Indeed, Begich’s leadership PAC accepted a $5,000 contribution from the Koch brothers in 2010.
Sullivan’s campaign fired back. “In response to Dan Sullivan’s growing momentum and impressive fundraising, Mark Begich’s out-of-state special interest allies are out with another shameless and false attack ad,” Sullivan spokesperson Mike Anderson said in a release.
Since joining the race, Sullivan has outraised Begich.
“It appears the Senator must be hoping that mud throwing will distract Alaskans from his ineffectiveness and record of voting with President Obama 97% of the time,” Anderson wrote.
Put Alaska First has spent about $1.2 million on ads supporting Begich and attacking Sullivan. Most of that money has come from the Democratic Senate Majority PAC, whose largest contributor in 2014 is former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
In contrast, the two super-PACs that have directly supported Sullivan have spent less than $250,000. About $75,000 of that has come from Sullivan’s brother and father and a board member who sits on the family business.
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