For months, GOP operatives spoke with dread of the prospects of running against Barack Obama in the fall. But after weeks of controversies over his former pastor, his views of blue-collar voters and even the sincerity of his patriotism, Republicans now are ready to place a $500,000 bet that Obama will be a heavy burden on down-ballot Democrats.
That's the approximate amount of advertising purchased so far by the National Republican Congressional Committee and GOP allies to link Democratic congressional hopefuls in Mississippi and Louisiana to their party's potential presidential nominee.
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