The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee will make its first foray into the Maine Senate race, where the three-way contest has narrowed in recent weeks.
The DSCC has purchased $410,000 in Maine airtime to run television ads from Oct. 2-12. DSCC executive director Guy Cecil attacked Republican nominee Charlie Summers in a statement.
"When Republican extremism forced Olympia Snowe to retire from the Senate, it presented a significant challenge to Mitch McConnell and the Republicans. Republican special interests have now spent $2 million boosting a candidate who is fundamentally out of step with the state," said Cecil. "Charlie Summers is an anti-choice Tea Partier, who supports eliminating the Department of Education, privatizing Social Security, protecting tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas, and ending Medicare as we know it. Charlie Summers should not be in the United States Senate and it is time every Mainer knows it."
Until this point, national Democrats have stayed out of a race where the independent candidate, former Gov. Angus King, is favored and expected to caucus with them if elected. Recent automated polls have showed King with a significant but dwindling lead, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee and U.S. Chamber of Commerce have launched ads targeting King. While the DSCC can't very well attack the Democratic candidate in the race (Cynthia Dill) or directly boost King, they can go after the Republican secretary of state.
"It's remarkable to see national Democrats now spending money in a state where they refuse to even endorse their own nominee," responded NRSC executive director Rob Jesmer in a statement emailed to reporters after the news broke.