$1.4 million ad buy targets Obama's Iran deal
By BURGESS EVERETT 6/23/15 7:20 PM EDT Updated 6/23/15 8:03 PM EDT
Millions of dollars worth of ads will hit the airwaves this week in an effort to pressure senators to take a hard line against President Barack Obama’s nascent nuclear deal with Iran — with a June 30 deadline to wrap up the agreement just a week away.
Security Initiative, a bipartisan group chaired by former senators, unleashes an ad blitz, urging eight senators from both parties to oppose any nuclear deal that doesn’t allow “unconditional inspections” of Iran’s nuclear facilities. The target list includes Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader in waiting, and John Thune of South Dakota, the GOP’s chief message man, according to sources familiar with the matter.
The group will spend about $1.4 million on the ad buys, beginning Wednesday, and run a full-page ad in The New York Times on June 29. Its board of directors includes former colleagues of many of the targeted senators: Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), Norm Coleman (R-Minn.) and Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.).
“It was a good time to get out into the discussion and to focus on eight important senators, four from each party, and just say to them: Please make clear to the administration that you’re not going to support an agreement with Iran that does not have additional inspections,” Lieberman said in an interview. “If the final agreement does not have that kind of inspection system, then I would do anything I can to urge Congress to reject it.”
On the other side, the liberal-leaning J Street is launching an advocacy campaign to show “why the opponents of an agreement are so wrong.”
But the size and scope of the ASI buy is just the latest indication that opponents of the nuclear deal can likely muster greater firepower.
ASI’s ad buy follows Secure America Now’s $1 million ad campaign targeting Schumer, Democratic Sens. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Michael Bennet of Colorado and independent Angus King of Maine. A multimillion dollar campaign from United Against Nuclear Iran also has been launched in the hopes of pressuring senators to take a skeptical view of the nuclear negotiations.
Both were announced Tuesday.
The ASI TV ads use harsh rhetoric, although it’s more tempered than a March spot that showed a white van exploding atop a parking garage. The group’s message demanded that Congress pass a law allowing it to review and possibly approve or reject a nuclear deal with Iran.
Although Congress passed just such a law, foes of the Iran negotiations, and any eventual deal, are now fighting an uphill battle to sway lawmakers to use their new powers to scuttle the agreement. Congress can either try to block the deal, which would take a veto-proof majority, or Republican leaders can hold a vote on approving the deal which would presumably show tepid support for Obama’s deal making.
In addition to Schumer and Thune, the ASI ads target several swing Democrats and two additional Republicans: Sens. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Chris Coons (D-Del.).
Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2015/06/14-million-ad-buy-targets-obamas-iran-deal-119353.html#ixzz3dwzIV87j