The top outside super PAC for Senate Democrats is bankrolling a new $6.5 million TV and digital ad campaign hitting Sens. David Perdue (R-GA) and Kelly Loeffler (R-GA) over their personal financial dealings in office, as Georgia’s crucial runoff elections for U.S. Senate intensify.
The group, Senate Majority PAC, is attacking Perdue over recent reporting that found the senator’s stock trading activities warranted an investigation from federal authorities, and taking Loeffler to task by linking the scrutiny into her investment activity to her stance on coronavirus relief legislation. Details of the ad campaign, which began hitting Georgia airwaves Wednesday night, were shared exclusively with The Daily Beast.
The ad blitz comes ahead of the Dec. 14 start date for early voting in the runoff elections, which will decide which party controls the U.S. Senate after election day on Jan. 5. The Democratic candidates, Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, have increasingly hit their GOP opponents over their investment activity, as Congress dithers on relief aid while the economic impacts of the pandemic deepen.
Perdue and Loeffler both moved large quantities of their stock holdings after private briefings for senators on the coronavirus in January. That activity attracted probes from the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission; neither agency brought charges against either senator, though they have not been exonerated, despite their claims to the contrary.
The Georgia runoffs are already set to shatter campaign spending records for a statewide election. Campaigns and outside groups on both sides have spent a combined $400 million in both runoff races as of Wednesday, according to the ad tracking firm AdImpact.
Warnock and Ossoff’s campaigns have purchased more ads through the Jan. 5 runoff than their GOP counterparts, spending a combined $114 million to Loeffler and Perdue’s $80 million, according to an AdImpact analysis.
But Republican outside groups have outpaced their Democratic counterparts in ad spending so far. The GOP super PAC American Crossroads has spent $44 million on ads attacking Warnock, and the Senate Leadership Fund, the PAC aligned with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), has spent $39 million on ads against Ossoff. And Peachtree PAC, a new, Georgia-focused super PAC linked to McConnell, has spent over $35 million on ads in both races.
To date, Senate Majority PAC, aligned with Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), has spent a total of $28 million, through two subsidiary groups. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee was next-most, spending over $6 million.