NRSC - Hotline: Aiding Ayotte

In case you missed it this morning…

Starting Lineup: Aiding Ayotte

National Journal’s Hotline OnCall

By Jeremy P. Jacobs

September 28, 2010

…NRSC Boosting Ayotte: The NRSC is going into New Hampshire, committing $171K in coordinated campaigns to former Attorney General Kelly Ayotte's (R) Senate campaign, according to NRSC sources.

That amount of money isn't mind blowing, but it is the maximum amount the NRSC can give to Ayotte in coordinated funds under New Hampshire campaign finance law. The money will be used to pay for Ayotte's upcoming TV ads.

The move puts pressure on the DSCC, which has yet to commit funds in support of Rep. Paul Hodes' (D) campaign.

Giving coordinated campaign funds has been a common strategy for the NRSC this year. As opposed to independent expenditure ads - where the committee isn't allowed to consult with the candidate -- it allows the NRSC to discuss strategy with the campaign and still pay for the air time. They have committed $1.9M to former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina in the California Senate race and $3.4M to Rep. Mark Kirk (R) in the Illinois contest.

It is worth noting, however, that the commitment does not mean Ayotte will be going on the air immediately. In California, those funds have yet to be used by Fiorina's campaign. And in Illinois, the Kirk campaign used the funds only after the DSCC went on the air with an IE ad…