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Campaign Almanac: Mike Franken reports raising $8.1 million so far
Also, new ads are posted in Iowa’s U.S. Senate and House campaigns
Gazette-Lee Des Moines Bureau
Oct. 11, 2022 3:03 pm
Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Mike Franken announced his campaign raised $3.6 million in the third quarter of 2022, for a total of $8.1 million raised to date, according to the campaign.
Franken is seeking election to represent Iowa in the Senate against Republican U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley. The amount is more than any previous challenger to Grassley raised, the campaign said. The campaign did not announce its cash on hand at the end of the quarter.
Grassley had raised close to $7.7 million in donations as of June 30. His campaign has not announced third-quarter fundraising totals. The deadline for filing with the Federal Election Commission is Oct. 15.
“Chuck Grassley says ‘the Senator we need is the senator we’ve got. Well, the Senator we’ve got has been an architect of a half century of attacks on a woman’s right to choose,” Franken campaign spokesperson C.J. Petersen said in the news release. “... Admiral Franken will represent all Iowans in the Senate by lowering costs, protecting our democracy, and will never take a dime of corporate PAC money.”
In a statement, Grassley’s campaign spokesperson Michaela Sundermann said the campaign would release fundraising numbers in the coming days.
“We are confident you will see Sen. Chuck Grassley continues to lead with more cash-on-hand and total fundraising to date,” she said. “Mike Franken once again has an extremely high cost of raising funds and burned through millions of dollars over the course of this campaign to fundraise from out-of-state donors.”
Franken announces endorsement from national security group
Democratic candidate for Senate Mike Franken announced the endorsement of National Security Leaders for America, a group of more than 200 former and retired military and other security officials.
The group is a bipartisan organization that includes mostly Democrats, in addition to 47 independents and six Republicans, according to a release from the campaign. Its members include retired generals, former Cabinet or service secretaries, and former ambassadors.
The group’s mission is to advocate “for positions, values, and elected officials who strengthen the United States as a democratic nation,” according to the group’s website.
In a letter, the group said Franken would stand up to threats to democracy and political violence.
“After years of service to this nation, we know moral courage when we see it,” the letter says. “Mike Franken has the moral courage necessary to take on the most pressing threats to our essential yet fragile democracy … He understands his job is to serve his country, not his party.”
Grassley ad attacks Franken’s abortion stance
Sen. Chuck Grassley’s campaign is out with a new ad targeting his Democratic opponent’s abortion stance.
Responding to an ad from Democrat Mike Franken that said Grassley, a Republican, thinks politicians should be allowed to restrict abortions without exception, Grassley’s ad said the senator supports exceptions on abortion bans.
The ad points to a vote to advance the 2018 Pain-Capable Unborn Child Act, which aimed to restrict abortion nationally at 20 weeks but provided exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother.
The ad says Franken supports abortion “up to the minute before childbirth,” pointing to statements in a May Senate primary debate, calling Franken “too extreme for Iowa.”
In the May debate, Franken said he doesn’t think the federal government should have laws determining fetal viability or requiring parental consent for abortions, and that Roe v. Wade should be codified.
“I believe that this is the responsibility of the mother, of the woman and her doctor,” he said in the debate.
In a statement, Franken’s campaign spokesperson C.J. Petersen said Grassley was covering up his anti-abortion record and lying about Franken’s abortion policy.
“(Franken’s view) is simple — we need to restore the right to an abortion that protected Iowan women for nearly 50 years,” Petersen said. “Sen. Grassley is trying to pull the wool over Iowans' eyes five weeks before his toughest election ever, and it's not going to work."
Mathis says cut the ‘bull’; Hinson ready to ‘change direction’
Candidates running for northeast Iowa’s new 2nd Congressional District have released new ads.
Republican incumbent U.S. Rep. Ashley Hinson, of Marion, released a new ad calling on voters to “change direction.” Hinson, in the ad, ties Democratic challenger and state senator Liz Mathis, of Hiawatha, to “failed” policies enacted by Democratic President Joe Biden and passed by Democratic majorities in Congress.
“Prices, inflation, way up. Drugs pouring over the border, and woke liberals destroying everything that makes America great,” Hinson says in the new ad. “My opponent, Liz Mathis, won’t change any of that. … It’s time to change direction and save America before it’s too late.”
Mathis, meanwhile, released a new ad touting her work in the Iowa Senate bringing Democrats and Republicans together. The ad highlights how before the pandemic, Mathis would dine with a bipartisan group of five senators serving on the Senate Agriculture Committee at an Altoona steakhouse on Monday nights to talk about things they had in common and how they can work together to get things done for Iowans.
Mathis, in the ad, calls “bull” on lawmakers in Washington, D.C., for not working in a bipartisan way to do the same.
“In Washington, I’ll continue to work with anyone to get things done for Iowa,” Mathis said.
The TV ads will run on broadcast, cable and streaming services in the Cedar Rapids-Waterloo-Dubuque and Rochester-Mason City markets, according to the Mathis campaign. To date, the campaign said it has placed more than $1.3 million in TV media buys with additional media placement to be reserved.
Paul Pate launches first ads
Paul Pate, the Republican incumbent Iowa secretary of state, launched the first ads of his re-election campaign.
Pate, a former state legislator and Cedar Rapids mayor, is being challenged by Democrat and Linn County Auditor Joel Miller.
“As Iowa’s secretary of state, it’s my job to be the referee, not to wear a team jersey,” Pate says in one of the ads. “We’re going to make sure your vote counts. Easy to vote and hard to cheat.”
The ads will run on Iowa TV, radio, digital and social media, Pate’s campaign said.