Lincoln: Labor unions spent approximately $5 million against Her Campaign

Outsiders from Blanche For Senate Blog:

To date, D.C. labor unions have spent approximately $5 million on what a Politico reporter describes as a “scorched earth campaign” against Sen. Lincoln because she doesn’t agree with them all of the time.  Their attacks and distortions reached a new level this week when the SEIU began airing a TV ad that misrepresents her longtime fight for an end to insurance discrimination against patients with pre-existing conditions. 

There are other outside influences at work in the effort to punish Sen. Lincoln for being an Arkansas Democrat.  The Halter campaign is paying Washington, D.C.-based Progressive Change Campaign Committee to supply its field operation.  Outside groups such as and Howard Dean’s Democracy for America are not only soliciting funds for the campaign, they are encouraging volunteers to head to Arkansas.  They have raised more than $3.5 million from outside the state for the Halter campaign.

Against these overwhelming odds, the Lincoln campaign is relying on good, old-fashioned hard work and shoe leather.  More than 250 Lincoln campaign volunteers from right here in Arkansas are talking to voters one on one.  Lincoln campaign staff and volunteers have made half-a-million calls in recent weeks and are planning an unprecedented grass roots effort during the final weekend.

The fact that Sen. Lincoln has withstood two months of negative attacks from these well-funded outside groups and still remains in a strong position is a testament to her toughness and popularity among Arkansas voters.  While a runoff election remains a distinct possibility, Sen. Lincoln and her supporters enter the final weekend of the primary election confident she has endured the worst of the attacks and upbeat about her chances to be the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate. 

The Senator will spend the closing days of the early voting period crisscrossing the state on her “Standing Up for Arkansas Jobs” Tour, highlighting her strong record on behalf of Arkansans.  She has a record of results fighting for the people of Arkansas, and Arkansans know they can count on her to stand up for them.  By standing up to the special interests – the labor unions, insurance companies and Wall Street – and doing what is best for Arkansas, regardless of the political fallout, she is proving that it is NOT business as usual in Washington.

D.C. Labor Unions at Work in Arkansas

Labor Unions Have Spent Millions Attacking Senator Lincoln on TV. Since March 1, D.C. labor unions have spent million attacking Senator Lincoln on television.  To date, Arkansans for Change, a union-funded group, has spent over $1.6 million; Communications Workers of America has spent nearly $240,000; AFSCME has spent over $574,000; and SEIU has spent nearly $1.2 million.

SEIU Launched $1 Million Campaign Against Sen. Lincoln With Only Few Weeks Remaining. In just the remaining weeks of the primary campaign, SEIU launched a $1 million campaign against Sen. Lincoln, including radio and television spots. [Talking Points Memo, 4/30/2010]

Unions Have Attacked Senator Lincoln in the Mail. D.C. unions have also sent out countless mailings around Arkansas, attacking Senator Lincoln.  In April, the AFL-CIO began circulating a mailer to 60,000 union households.  The union also distributed leaflets at websites targeting Sen. Lincoln. [MSNBC’s FirstRead, 4/8/2010; Talking Points Memo, 4/22/2010]

Outsiders Running Halter’s Field Operation

Maryland Local Recruiting Volunteers for Halter. On a CWA Chapter’s website, located in Maryland, one post called for volunteers to canvass for Halter, misspelling both the state and Senator Lincoln’s name.  “I would like for us to stay on the ground for an additional day or 2 in order to campaign for Bill Halter.  He is running in the AK primary for the US Senate against Blanch Lincoln.” [CWA 2100]

Progressive Group Running Halter’s Field Operation. According to the Hill, “PCCC staffers are also helping run Halter’s field operation.” [The Hill, 5/4/2010]

Halter Campaign Paying PCCC For Field. According to his campaign’s FEC filings, Halter is paying the Progressive Change Campaign Committee over $13,000 for “staff time.” [Halter Campaign FEC Filings]

Progressive Group Asking for Volunteers to Flood Arkansas From Outside the State. Democracy for America, a liberal group based in Vermont, sent out a blast email asking supporters “to help recruit and train volunteers” and if they know of anyone with “a spare room where one of them can stay until the primary?” [Democracy for America email, 4/25/2010]

Labor Unions Flooding Arkansas With Workers From Outside the State. According to the Nation, “for the past month, about twenty-five canvassers employed by Working America, an affiliate of the AFL-CIO, have fanned out across the Little Rock area to knock on doors, spreading the word of Halter’s candidacy.” One canvasser, Willie Holmes of Youngstown, Ohio “came to town in April 2009,” when the group “had zero members in the state.” [The Nation, 5/5/2010]