A nonprofit funded by Charles and David Koch is reportedly spending almost $2 million on airtime in Oregon, where Republican Monica Wehby is campaigning to unseat Sen. Jeff Merkley (D), according to Politico Pro.
Freedom Partners purchased $1.9 million of airtime in Oregon, Politico reported Thursday, nearly a quarter of the total $7.5 million they'll spend on airtime between August and November. The nonprofit also made claims in Iowa, Colorado, Louisiana, North Carolina and Michigan.
It's unknown whether Freedom Partners will use the airtime to attack Merkley, tout Wehby or otherwise, but the buy confirms the group's eye on Wehby's bid to unseat the incumbent come November.
The Merkley campaign believes the purchase affirms the Koch's opposition to the incumbent senator's middle class agenda. Merkley spokeswoman Lindsey O'Brien said the brothers "hate" Merkley's commitment to the middle-class, favoring Wehby's promise to cut taxes for the wealthiest Americans in a tax plan reminiscent of then-presidential candidate Mitt Romney's plan in 2012.
"The Big Oil billionaire Koch brothers want a rubber stamp for their leave-no-millionaire-behind, anti-middle class agenda in Washington D.C., and that's why they're dropping millions into Oregon to buy our Senate seat for Monica Wehby," O'Brien said in a statement.
Wehby's campaign announced on Thursday a second quarter fundraising haul of more than $955,000. Merkley nearly doubled that, raising $1.8 million. HuffPollster, which combines all publicly available polling data, has Merkley up by 14 points almost four months ahead of the general election.
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