For the first time in recent history, a group is starting to run television ads targeting the Minnesota Legislature. The liberal group, The Alliance for a Better Minnesota (ABM), says it will start running the ad to try to convince voters to back DFL candidates for the Legislature.
The effort is unique, since candidates and outside groups rarely spend the large amount of money needed to air commercials on broadcast stations like KSTP, KARE, FOX9 and WCCO. Most candidates and outside groups run ads on cable TV because they can be more targeted to specific legislative districts. In a news release, ABM said it would start running ads on broadcast TV and then take a more targeted advertising approach on cable. A spokesman won't say how much the group is spending on the ad campaign.
The Alliance for a Better Minnesota is a group funded by wealthy DFL donors, labor unions and other groups. Democrats lost control of both the House and Senate in the 2010 election. ABM spent most of its time and energy helping elect Democrat Mark Dayton governor in 2010 and did little to influence the races for the Legislature.
ABM is just one of several outside groups that are targeting legislative races this year. Other groups include the GOP-leaning Freedom Club and the MN Chamber of Commerce, which endorses candidates of both parties but supports the GOP-controlled Legislature.
Every seat in the Legislature is on the ballot this year.