Political spending: It's already on for 2012


It seems like the dust has barely settled since the 2010 midterms, but despite the brief tenure of the freshman class in Congress, advertising is already going up aimed at defeating or supporting legislators in the House of Representatives. Crossroads GPS has a flight on radio that’s doing both.

Crossroads GPS is related to American Crossroads, the national PAC associated with former George W. Bush advisor Karl Rove. The difference in the two is their tax status – GPS is the type of organization that does not have to report the source of its funding.

The group is spending $450K on a radio buy that is keyed to the recent budget vote in the House of Representatives that proposed over $60B in cuts to the budget.

The campaign will be a combination of the negative and the positive. 12 of the ads will attack Democrats who opposed the cuts, and 10 will bolster Republicans who supported them.

A Yahoo News report notes that GPS  earlier spent $95K on radio in 19 districts in response to an Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee flight that had attacked Republicans in swing districts.

The new GPS attack ads are targeting:

* Jim Costa (D-CA)

* Leonard Boswell (D-IA)

* Joe Donnelly (D-IN)

* Ben Chandler (D-KY)

* Tim Walz (D-MN)

* Martin Heinrich (D-NM)

* Tim Bishop (D-NY)

* Bill Owens (D-NY)

* Mark Critz (D-PA)

* Jim Matheson (D-UT)

* Mike Michaud (D-ME)

* Rick Larsen (D-WA)

Republicans getting a positive mention include:

* Bob Dold (R-IL)

* Chip Cravaack (R-MN)

* Jon Runyan (R-NJ)

* Robert Hurt (R-VA)

* Sean Duffy (R-WI)

* David McKinley (R-WV)

* Quico Canseco (R-TX)

* Jamie Herrera Beutler (R-WA)

* Lou Barletta (R-PA)

* Frank Guinta (R-NH)

RBR-TVBR observation: Spending on candidates will of course be sporadic and highly targeted until we get closer to the actual vote. But this provides an early look at where battlegrounds are likely to be, and also underscores the spending power of national political organizations.