Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
February 11, 2016

Republican Whacks Harry Reid in New North Carolina Senate Ad

Tillis is a Republican running for Senate in North Carolina. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call)

Tillis is a Republican running for Senate in North Carolina. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call)

Earlier this week, Senate Majority PAC, a Democratic group, went up with an ad attacking Republican state Speaker Thom Tillis for his connection to former aides who had inappropriate relationships with lobbyists.

Now, the Tillis campaign is set to go on television with a response ad.

The 30-second spot, titled “Meddling,” accuses Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., of “trying to fool Republican voters, meddling in our primary to get a weak opponent for Kay Hagan.”

The North Carolina Senate race is rated Toss-up/Tilt Democrat by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call, in part, because of uncertainty in the GOP primary.

According to a source with the Tillis campaign, the ad will be placed in rotation in a previous, ongoing ad buy, including $554,683 placed from April 14 to May 4.

Here is the transcript of the ad, produced by OnMessage, Inc.:

“Seen those ads attacking Thom Tillis? They’re false. Tillis fired the staffers. Know who’s paying for the sleazy ads? It’s Harry Reid. Reid’s trying to fool Republican voters, meddling in our primary to get a weak opponent for Kay Hagan. The press says Democrats ‘fear Tillis the most.’ Tillis brought a conservative revolution to Raleigh. That’s why we need him in Washington. Don’t be fooled by Harry Reid. I’m Thom Tillis and I approved this message.”

Here is the previous Senate Majority PAC ad:

Local Democratic analyst Thomas Mills wrote that the latest SMP ad was a welcome shift from the previous ads trying to link Tillis with the Koch Brothers.

“It’s a smart move. Not only does it resonate with GOP primary voters, it begins to define Tillis in general,” Mills wrote. “Nobody, regardless of party affiliation, wants a U.S. Senator with a hint of scandal following him, especially in the state that had to suffer through the John Edwards affair.”

If the Tillis campaign didn’t think the ad had the potential to do damage, it is unlikely it would have responded so quickly. But it’s interesting that the ad devotes just a few seconds specifically responding to the charge and quickly pivots to Reid and national Democrats.


Related stories: 

Roll Call on the Road: Michelle Nunn Hits Bipartisan Tone in Georgia Senate Stump Speech

Roll Call on the Road: A Low-Key Paul Broun Campaigns for Senate in Georgia


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  • wdb

    I don’t know whether Harry Reid fears Thom Tillis more than the other Republicans, but from what I’ve seen, Tillis actually fares worse in head-to-head polls with Hagan than his primary opponents do. This is somewhat surprising as he’s the more well-known and “establishment” candidate, but surprises happen.

    • gaylib

      That’s because most North Carolinians don’t know what fringe extremists the other candidates are yet.

      • LouAnnWatson

        said the progressive hagan voter

      • Jon Sweeney

        Says the coward that voted for the puke that voted against the baby born alive act..

      • JeffDeWitt

        Extremists like Hagan that supported 0bamaCare?

    • JeffDeWitt

      That’s because he IS the establishment candidate. We have had ENOUGH of “go along to get along” establishment Republicans.

      We need more men (and women) in the Senate like the late, great Jesse Helms. Never mind what you thought of his politics he was the same man in Washington as he was when running for re-election. If Helms told you he was going to support something or what he believed you could take it to the bank he really DID support that and he DID believe it.

  • cocerned

    More important things to worry about I this country than who slept with who.get real

  • pitch1934

    We’d be a lot better off if all outsiders stayed out of races in states where they don’t live or have a business. Alas, it is not to be.

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  • Aaron1960

    Perhaps state legislatures should start picking their senators again.

    • LouAnnWatson

      that would require a vote in congress to repeal the 17th amendment…hagan would certainly not be the choice for that outcome.

      • Aaron1960

        Just saying, overall I think we would get a state’s interest senate instead of a federal gov’t focused one. Lobbyists would scream and K Street would (probably) suffer office vacancies. One can dream anyway.

      • Rick Caird

        Or an article 5 convention with specific topics. That could be one of the topics.

      • Rich Vail

        If I recall correctly, it only takes the legislatures of 37 states to pass a bill of repeal…to remove an amendment to the US Constitution…so start lobbying your legislatures.

        Use the hook that it will return power to the states that was removed by the 17th Amendment…and make US Senators far more amenable to their state legislatures…and less likely to amass huge election war chests….

      • Reginald Pettifogger


    • JeffDeWitt

      Yes indeed, the 17th Amendment was one of the biggest mistakes we ever made.

      • Lance_man

        Sometimes I think, so was the 19th.

      • Reginald Pettifogger

        Along with the 16th, and 18th, and the Federal Reserve.
        (I’m going nowhere near that 19th, not going to go there)

        • 1lucy1


      • 1lucy1

        More than anything else, it allowed the Progressives to dominate the congress for years.

  • gaylib

    Tillis is a blatant liar. He didn’t fire anybody, and all anyone has to do is go back and look at the facts.

    • Nonameworks

      Post some links.

      • gaylib
        • JDanaH

          Not exactly an objective source you’re linking to.

        • Jon Sweeney

          So gay boy you go to a kayhagan link it that right? Google the number of times she said you can keep your health plan and then grow a pair.

        • 1lucy1

          I thought most gays were libs.

      • Roger Lamb

        He can’t, he is lying. You already knew that because he was a Democrat. Anyone trying to protect Harry (The Liar) Reid is not worth responding to.

  • Nonameworks

    “… the state that had to suffer through the John Edwards affair …” because the MSM was committed to the Democrat party lock, stock, and barrel.
    How about a press willing to honestly report — you know, things like Lewinsky, Edwards, the Kennedy fiascos..?
    It would save us all a lot of time and money. And preserve / restore some integrity in the supposed “free” press.

  • elHombre

    Is there some response appropriate to the SMP ad other than, “it’s false.”

    Most interesting is Democrat intervention in a Repub primary. I wonder why. LOL.

    • 1lucy1

      They want a weak candidate and a divided Republican party.Divide and conquer–select the best of 2 evils.

  • Rick Caird

    I have been arguing for months now that the Republicans should tie every Democratic Senate Candidate to Harry Reid. Every single one of them. Reid gives plenty of ammunition and the latest about “domestic terrorists” from the most corrupt and lying Senate majority leader in my lifetime needs to be hung around the neck of every Democrat.

    • 1lucy1

      If they don’t they’re stupid.

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    While today’s Internet technology enables the principles of morality, liberty, and prosperity to spread as never before, its imagery also unleashes the anti-social passion of envy from its moral cage.

  • Mike Crichton

    If we are to choose our own way, rather than having it dictated to us, our rewards must result from using our talents and abilities wisely.

  • fishal41

    Harry needs to be whacked alright.

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  • gardenSalsa64

    Those who preach from collectivism’s altar attempt to justify centralized power with the fatally conceited notion that the order around us can only be maintained through the leaden threads of centralized control.

  • Shanghied1

    Democrats Lie, Cheat, Steal and buy votes using taxpayer money. Harry Reid needs a new orange jump suit in federal prison.

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