WASHINGTON -- The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) and the political arm of the Sierra Club are targeting Iowa Republican candidate Joni Ernst with an $800,000 ad buy, highlighting statements she made in a primary debate about her desire to shut down the Environmental Protection Agency.
LCV has added Ernst to its "Dirty Dozen" list, which it produces each election cycle to target candidates it opposes. The group plans to start running the ad on Iowa television stations this Sunday. LCV and the Sierra Club Independent Action previously ran ads attacking Ernst on this issue in June, and the Sierra Club also announced Thursday that it plans to spend an additional $1 million on anti-Ernst ads in September and October.
(Watch the ad above.)
LCV President Gene Karpinski said Thursday that the group is on pace to spend $25 million this election cycle, by far the most money it has ever spent.
The total is five times the amount that LCV spent on the last midterm election in 2010, and $10 million more than it spent in 2012. The environmental activist group said it intends to spend about half of the $25 million on Senate races, in hopes of keeping a "pro-environment Senate."
LCV is focusing much of its Senate spending on a few key races: Iowa, Colorado, Michigan, and New Hampshire. The group is also spending on the Alaska Senate race between incumbent Democrat Mark Begich and Republican Dan Sullivan through its state-based affiliate.
Separately, LCV Action Fund and the Natural Resources Defenses Council Action Fund PAC have raised nearly $4.6 million this year through their "GiveGreen" program, which allows donors to give directly to the campaigns of federal and state candidates the groups have endorsed.