• Holmes

An editor at U.S. News & World Report spotted my Bleader post on Joe Ricketts and his “Ricketts Plan” to defeat Barack Obama this November, and sent me this story from one of his colleagues.

Writes reporter Seth Cline:

“Ending Spending Action Fund, the Super PAC funded entirely by Ricketts, has spent more than $1.3 million since 2010 influencing elections, all of it benefitting Republican candidates, according to federal election filings. Like a closer in baseball brought on in the ninth inning to seal a victory, the group’s moves have come just days before voters head to the polls, and only once has it failed to ensure victory.”

One Democratic victim was Congressman John Spratt of South Carolina, chairman of the House budget committee. “By Election Day,” Cline tells us, “Ricketts would dump $187,000 into the race—a game-changing sum in a rural district with no major television markets or newspapers. Spratt lost the race to Republican Mick Mulvaney by 10 points. ‘It was like a tidal wave,’ Spratt says. ‘Suddenly constituents were calling saying they were getting five pieces of mail a day towards the end, on all kinds of topics.'”

The Democrat who won despite Ricketts’s money was Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, “who spent $26 million on his re-election, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, a sum not available to most candidates.”