DENVER
09/23/2010 06:41 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Colorado Dems' Ad Strategy Worked: Weak Tea Party Candidate Won Primary

A Democratic campaign group's $500,000 in ads targeting the perceived front runner in the Colorado governor's primary in August may have clinched the GOP nomination for a Tea Party candidate with no political experience.

Small businessman Dan Maes won the GOP nomination after Colorado Freedom Fund ran television ads in the two weeks before the Aug. 10 primary slamming former congressman Scott McInnis for plagiarizing a series of papers on water policy. McInnis ended up losing to Maes by 5,150 votes out of 390,108 cast.

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