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Eye On Boise

Tue., Oct. 7, 2008, 10:16 a.m.

Outside group’s ad targets Risch

A new political commercial targeting Idaho Senate candidate Jim Risch isn’t from any of his four opponents – it’s from a national group that's also run lots of ads against Oregon GOP Sen. Gordon Smith. The group is closely tied to the Democratic Party and says it's diving into races where it can highlight "Republican hypocrisy." It targets Risch for raising sales taxes, in something of a counterpoint to his earlier campaign ad boasting he cut property taxes. Actually he did both.

Bill Buck, executive director of Majority Action, the Washington, D.C.-based group that placed the ad with a big ad buy throughout Idaho, including the Spokane market, said, “We are an issue advocacy organization. We do not in any way advocate any sort of electoral outcome. Our mission is to shine a spotlight on people’s records and to make sure that their constituents are aware of those.”

Majority Action is funded by “a mixture of progressive organizations, individuals and organized labor,” Buck said. Big Democratic donor George Soros donated to the group when it started up two years ago; major funders in the current election cycle include labor unions. Risch, Idaho’s current lieutenant governor, is the Republican nominee running for the U.S. Senate seat now held by Larry Craig. He faces Democrat Larry LaRocco, Libertarian Kent Marmon, and independents Rex Rammell, and “Pro-Life,” who legally changed his name from Marvin Richardson. You can read my full story here at

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Eye On Boise

News, happenings and more from the Idaho Legislature and the state capital.