Cain can make a lot of pizza with the dough he's raising... Rove's group is targeting five Democrats... Are Super PACs really independent? Not really... Stephen Colbert clogs up the FEC with e-mails from his fans... Rick Perry thinks looking like a doofus is a way to raise money... And ads from AFSCME, the DNC, and a new super PAC backing Newt.
HERMAN CAIN ROLLING IN DOUGH -- During Herman Cain's book tour earlier this year he raised a little more than $4 million for his presidential campaign. As he has jumped to the top of most polls in the Republican primary Cain's fundraising has taken off. Today he announced that he has raised $9.1 million since October 1. The campaign claims that $2.25 million of that total has come in the past ten days, the approximate timeline for the recent sexual harassment scandal. "Mr. Cain's vision to renew our country and create new jobs via his bold '9-9-9 Plan' is resonating across America," Mark Block, Chief of Staff to the Herman Cain presidential campaign, said in a statement. If the campaign were to maintain this pace - $225,000 per day - it would raise $20 million through December. That's on pace to be the biggest fundraising quarter for a Republican candidate this year. [HuffPost]
Herman Cain sures knows how to celebrate his fundraising success. This is a screen-grab of the Cain campaign's web site after hitting the $999,000 target for their Iowa Fund. The exploding thermometer image was quickly removed by the campaign because, well, you'll see why.
CROSSROADS TARGETS SENATE DEMS -- The Karl Rove-linked Crossroads GPS, a conservative non-profit that does not disclose its donors, launched a $1.8 million "issue" ad buy against three sitting Democratic senators and two Senate candidates. Yesterday, HuffPost reported on the ad buy against Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren, which seeks to tie her to the "extreme left protests" of Occupy Wall Street. The anti-Warren ad also hits the former White House CFPB organizer for being a Harvard professor, a classic culture war trope. The four other ads all tie the targets to President Barack Obama, spending and regulatory policies. The four other targets are Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), and former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (D-Va.).
Crossroads GPS hits Elizabeth Warren for wearing Che Guevara T-shirts or something -- [http://youtu.be/tNxez4ddpa0]
Crossroads GPS says that Tim Kaine is a "cheerleader" for Obama -- [http://youtu.be/xZl3uVDKvwg]
Crossroads GPS ad knocks Ben Nelson for stimulus support -- [http://youtu.be/5MP_i41Vdg0]
Jon Tester is terrible on the dust issue, according to Crossroads GPS -- [http://youtu.be/1HtHY1qvizI]
Crossroads GPS says Claire McCaskill walks in Obama's foot steps -- [http://youtu.be/1sbec3RsJBo]
A new super PAC backing Newt Gingrich launched its first ad -- [http://youtu.be/k24V_sQsCJ4]
DNC continues its never-ending assault on Romney -- [http://youtu.be/a7K89UoBhUo]
The American Action Network runs ads calling on Reps. Leonard Boswell (D-Iowa) and Larry Kissell (D-N.C.) to support a balanced budget amendment -- [http://youtu.be/4yCJffKx_8A; http://youtu.be/jL1PgZ2H65w]
AFSCME, the public employee union, is going up with ads touting public workers in New York -- [http://youtu.be/I7JWO8ds3yE]
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SUPER PACS NOT SUPER INDEPENDENT -- Super PACs are routinely reported to be independent political committees. The word "independent" is, however, a legal term and does not reflect what normal people would view as independence. HuffPost reports, "There is already a host of activities on which candidates, political parties and independent groups can collaborate that do not rise to a level of "coordination" under the law. The only area where interaction between outside groups and candidates or parties can be legally labeled coordination is in the creation and distribution of such materials as advertisements, brochures, mailers and other informational products. "The coordination rules apply to coordinated spending, not coordination between strategies or traveling," explained Paul S. Ryan, FEC director of the Campaign Legal Center. "The only thing that cannot be coordinated, that they cannot talk about, is where the super PAC is going to run ads, how much those ads cost, or what is in those ads or how long they will stay up." ... Candidates and elected officials are even allowed to raise money for super PACs and other outside groups so long as they keep their fundraising request within the contribution limit that applies to candidates. A donor solicited by an elected official could, of course, give in excess of the maximum amount that the official requested. [HuffPost]
OOPS, NOW GIVE ME MONEY -- What's worse in terms of fundraising, finding yourself embroiled in a weeks-long sexual harassment scandal with multiple accusers or appearing to be doofus on national television? We now know the answer to be the latter. Still, Rick Perry is fundraising off of his "Oops" moment. The Perry campaign e-mailed it's list calling the governor's senior moment a "human moment" and asking supporters to send the campaign the name of government departments that they'd like to forget. Also, "And, if you could, throw in a $5 contribution for every agency you would like to forget. We hope you have a long list. And we promise we will write down every last idea. So we don't forget." [HuffPost]
NEWT GET UNLIMITED MONEY SUPPORT -- As mentioned above, a new super PAC has launched to support Newt Gingrich's presidential ambitions. Politico's Alexander Burns writes, "...a new, pro-Newt Gingrich super PAC - Solutions 2012 - launched around the time of the GOP presidential debate last night. Charlie Smith, a former College Republicans chairman, is heading it up." No word on whether they'll take in-kind contributions from Tiffany's. [Politico]
NUISANCE SUPER PACS -- All of us who spend our time going through campaign finance reports and political committee filings dread the day that Josue Larose decides he's going to create a few dozen new super PACs, or maybe he'll create a handful of new political parties. The Sunlight Foundation Reporting Group's Lindsay Young writes about Larose's latest batch, "From the man who brought Florida the Billionaire Josue Larose's Dating Women Committee, Josue Larose has filled the forms with the FEC to create 20 new super PACs. Clearly, there are few hurdles to creating a super PAC or multiple super PACs, that can then accept unlimited contributions. ...In Florida, Larose ran as a write-in candidate for governor, were he garnered press attention for the 340 PACs and 40 political parties he created. He also ran for the U.S. Senate from Florida, winning 7 votes, according to the Sun Sentinel." [SFRG]
THE FEC HAS NEVER BEEN THIS FUNNY -- On Tuesday, Stephen Colbert filed comments supporting a Federal Election Commission (FEC) advisory opinion request submitted by the Karl Rove-linked American Crossroads group asking for permission to include candidate and federal officials in their super PAC ads. Colbert's request, which was obviously intended to skewer the Crossroads request, also came with a call for his supporters to e-mail their comments to the FEC. Hundreds of comments have already been submitted. The majority are sincere calls to reject the request. Some, however, attempt to follow Colbert's satiric lead.
"What fun is buying somebody an election if you have no elected official to share the moment with?"
"Please approve this opinion, as more money is needed to influence voters opinions. Also please add in a provision that each dollar a Super PAC collects $1 must also be sent to me."
"I like bears in fact I consider Mr. Rove one of the greatest bears this nation has ever seen. ... So before you consider this request maybe there's another question you should ask yourself do you really want Crossroads placing ads that clearly condone bear attacks."
"This electronic opinion is neither coordinated with (nor sharing consensual pleasure with) Colbert Super PAC."
And this poorly scanned image of a cat with the text: "Rove kitty can haz loophole to buy votes plz?" [http://bit.ly/u8yuvP]
RECENT POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE FILINGS
Six PAC, Cambridge, Mass., Treasurer: Nathaniel Wald Donohue.
America United PAC, St. Louis, Mo., Treasurer: Louis Phillips.
RECENT INDEPENDENT EXPENDITURES
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