The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is jumping into the Virginia Senate race, launching separate ads for George Allen and against Timothy M. Kaine as part of a multistate media campaign.
The chamber announced Thursday that it would be running spots in 12 U.S. House districts and eight states with competitive Senate races, as the business group aims to contrast candidates who support “big government or free enterprise policies.” That includes Virginia, where ex-governors Allen (R) and Kaine (D) are their respective parties’ expected nominees.
One chamber spot, titled “Blueprint,” praises Allen for his record on economic issues:
The ad applauds Allen for supporting President George W. Bush’s tax cuts when he served in the Senate, and for his spending record as governor. The Kaine campaign responded quickly to the spot, issuing a point-by-point rebuttal of the ad.
“No matter how much money George Allen and his allies spend, they can’t change the facts,” Kaine spokeswoman Brandi Hoffine said.
The second spot, “No Great Achievement,” attacks Kaine for his support of President Obama’s health care plan:
Campaign finance rules dictate that the chamber cannot directly say “vote against Kaine.” So the ad implores viewers to call Kaine and “ask him why he supports job-killing Obamacare.”
The Wall Street Journal reports that the chamber is spending a total of $10 million nationally on the campaign, almost entirely aimed at strengthening Republican candidates and opposing Democrats. Utah Rep. Jim Matheson appears to be the only Democrat whom the ad campaign will support.