House Democrats just dropped $700,000 on a campaign ad in the Mississippi special election, according to overnight disclosures filed with the Federal Election Commission.
With this ad buy, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has spent more than $1.1 million to pick up a seat in this conservative corner of one of the most Republican states in the country, where Democrat Travis Childers appears to have the edge over Republican Greg Davis.
A Childers win on May 13 would be another major blow for the GOP at this stage in the election cycle, particularly if Democrat Don Cazayoux picks up another Republican seat this weekend in the Louisiana special election.
House Democrats are doing everything in their power to deal Republicans another crippling defeat in both races after picking up the seat previously held by former GOP Speaker Dennis Hastert in Illinois earlier this year. In addition to the ad buy, which could have a sizeable impact in such a small-market congressional district, the committee is also sponsoring phone banks opposing Davis, according to those same FEC filings.
Childers nearly won the seat outright in the first round of this special election, and his support coupled with that of another Democrat in the initial race would give him a narrow edge over his Republican opponent. At the very least, the DCCC is forcing Republicans to spend money where they don't want to. The National Republican Congressional Committee has already spent more than $430,000 on the Mississippi seat. That represents a hefty commitment for the cash-strapped committee to spend on a once solidly Republican seat, particularly in light of the party's fundraising woes.
Republican Roger Wicker, who moved on to Senate earlier this year, did not have trouble holding the seat in recent years, and President Bush beat his Democratic opponents by sizeable margins in 2000 and 2004.