Senate Democrats are being forced to spend big money in a solid blue state to protect Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), whose ethics problems continue to dog him on the campaign trail.
The Senate Majority PAC is going up with $3 million in advertising to attack self-funding Republican Bob Hugin in an effort to forestall a possible disaster in the blue state, TPM confirms.
Menendez’s standing in the state has tanked in the wake of a federal bribery and corruption trial that ended in a mistrial. The Senate Ethics Committee formally admonished him for receiving major gifts from close friend and donor Solomon Melgen earlier this year.
Recent public polls have found Menendez in the lead, but vary about how comfortable that lead is, with some showing Hugin within striking distance.
The ad attacks the healthcare executive’s business record and tying him to President Trump.
The significant investment comes in response to Hugin and his allies outspending Menendez and his allies by a massive $22 million to $3.3 million in recent weeks.
TPM wrote more than a year ago about how Menendez’s ethics problems could give Senate Democrats huge headaches during this campaign.
This is the second time national Democrats have been forced to spend large sums defending Menendez they would have much rather spent elsewhere because of his ethics problems. In 2006, they had to do the same.
The Huffington Post first reported the spending.