Conservative political group Americans for Prosperity (AFP) has announced a major seven figure ad buy in the Show-Me State.
AFP Missouri is spending $1.2 million on advertising that urges Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill to support the tax package put forth last week by President Trump and Congressional Republicans.
The group, which is funded by activist billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, says the TV commercials are part of a larger $4.5 million ad buy, which includes campaigns in Indiana and Wisconsin. The ads will run on cable and local network affiliates for three weeks starting Friday, and will be supplemented by a digital buy.
In a release, AFP Missouri said state director Jeremy Cady met with members of the Missouri congressional delegation and received an in-depth tax reform briefing from senior administration officials.
The group says it focused its efforts during the summer on changing the tax structure, playing off a favorite word of President Trump, to “unrig” the economy. The TV commercial features a woman claiming that tax reform isn’t a political issue:
“People are sick of politics. I am too.
But fixing our broken tax system isn’t about politics, it’s about helping people. It means the powerful, well-connected, the politicians – they’ll stop benefiting from a rigged system.
It means everyday Americans will have more money to spend on what’s important to them.
That’s what tax reform will do.
So what’s stopping us?”
The commercial finishes with a female voice-over stating “Senator McCaskill is standing in the way of a fair, simple tax system”.
The commercial could be meant to box in McCaskill in front of what’s expected to be a tight reelection race for her in 2018.
It could also be an outreach to the Democrat. Republicans will need at least seven members of McCaskill’s party to pass any tax package through the Senate. The president has made overtures to several Democrats in red states, including McCaskill, to support the GOP plan.
McCaskill hasn’t been terribly vocal on the subject lately, but released a statement to Missourinet Wednesday evening. In it, she signaled a willingness to work with Republicans while leaving herself an exit ramp if she finds herself at odds with the final plan.
“The most important part of this proposal is the commitment to a ‘transparent and inclusive process’ and the welcoming of bipartisan support and participation,” said McCaskill.
“That’s what’s going to make or break this process, and if Republican leaders are serious about that commitment, I’m eager to get to work with them to support a plan that’ll strengthen Missouri’s working families.” While there are some specific ideas in here I would support, like the expanded child care tax credit and the increased deduction for middle class families—and some I don’t, like tax breaks for the wealthiest—I’m not going to draw any lines in the sand until we’ve had that robust public debate and can see analysis of how each proposal would affect the bottom line for Missouri’s working families, and our deficit.”
The 2018 Missouri Senate race has been rated a tossup by Nathan Gonzales of Inside Elections. It’s expected to be among the most expensive elections next year.