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GOP group reserves TV ads starting day after Tuesday's primary

Nathaniel Herz

Tired of political ads, and hoping for a break after Tuesday’s primary election?

Tough luck.

Republican political group Crossroads GPS is pouring an additional $1.25 million into the U.S. Senate race in Alaska, reserving television spots that would start running Wednesday, according to information from the campaign of Democratic incumbent U.S. Sen. Mark Begich and filings with Federal Communications Commission.

Crossroads GPS has already run ads targeting Begich on veterans issues and health care reform.

Its new buy runs Wednesday through Sept. 3. An affiliated Republican group, American Crossroads, already reserved $5.5 million in ads running from Sept. 8 through Election Day -- meaning that voters will be getting a nearly nonstop stream of ads through Nov. 4.

Art Hackney, a local spokesman for the two groups, said it was unlikely the gap between Sept. 3 and Sept. would be left open -- though that could depend on the outcome of Tuesday’s three-way primary, he added.

“I doubt Alaskans will be spared for a single second,” Hackney said.

Jim Lottsfeldt, the strategist for a super PAC supporting Begich, pointed out that the Republican groups’ television time is merely reserved, and that it could be pulled.

Lottsfeldt’s super PAC, Put Alaska First, has already announced plans for more than $4 million in ads in the eight weeks leading up to Election Day. Lottsfeldt said the group was prepared to spend more, if necessary.

“We’re not going to get left behind,” he said.

Asked if he thought Alaskans would get tired of the barrage of political ads, Lottsfeldt responded: “People are already tired of it.”

“It’s just a matter of degree, at this point,” he added.