Sherrod Brown Campaign In Ohio Faces $5 Million Ad Barrage Without Help
Facing an avalanche of negative advertisements, labor’s most outspoken and visible champion in the Senate has, so far, been left to fend for himself.
With seven months left in the campaign, no candidate running for reelection -- save President Barack Obama -- has been targeted by outside interests more than Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). Over $5.1 million has been spent on television ads opposing Brown in the 2012 cycle, according to data provided by a Senate Democratic campaign operative. The top spenders are the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which spent $2.7 million, and 60 Plus Association, the conservative group that opposes health care reform, which spent another $1.4 million. Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS and Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee have also spent heavily in the race.
Brown isn't the only candidate these groups are targeting, but he has consistently been at the top of their list. The Missouri Senate race has attracted the second-highest amount of spending, with Republicans purchasing $3.45 million worth of ad buys against Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.).
The bullseye on Brown's back, however, has been largest and most inviting, and it's forcing officials to confront -- much sooner than envisioned -- one of the more critical questions they will face this cycle. How long can an out-gunned network of Democratic-allied interest groups wait to get involved?