WASHINGTON (AP) — A conservative group is launching a radio ad challenging Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell to oppose any money for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) even if it means triggering a government shutdown.
The Senate Conservatives Fund is spending nearly $50,000 on the 60-second commercial that will begin airing on Tuesday in Kentucky, where McConnell is locked in a tough race for a sixth term. The GOP leader faces both a primary rival, businessman Matt Bevin, and a Democratic foe, Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes.
“Republicans in Congress can stop Obamacare by refusing to fund it, but Senator Mitch McConnell refuses to lead the fight,” says the ad which also makes a reference to a recent campaign embarrassment for McConnell.
“The Obamacare bill stinks, and holding your nose won’t make it any better,” the commercial says.
Earlier this month, audio of a Jan. 9 telephone conversation revealed that Jesse Benton, McConnell’s campaign manager, said he was “holding my nose” while working for the candidate. Benton later said in a statement that he believes in McConnell and is 100 percent committed to his re-election.
The Associated Press obtained a text of the conservative group’s ad in advance.
The Senate Conservatives Fund, which was founded by former South Carolina Republican Sen. Jim DeMint, is spending close to $200,000 on radio ads in six other states calling on GOP senators to refuse to fund the health care law. The group’s targets are North Carolina’s Richard Burr, South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham, Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Johnny Isakson of Georgia, Mississippi’s Thad Cochran and Arizona’s Jeff Flake.