Washington (CNN) - An independent group co-founded by Karl Rove that's already spending big bucks to put up television commercials critical of President Barack Obama is now going up with ads in three crucial U.S. Senate races.
Crossroads GPS and American Crossroads announced Thursday they will spend $1.12 million to run spots statewide on broadcast TV and cable in Indiana, Montana, and New Mexico.
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The ad in Montana takes on freshman Democratic Sen. Jon Tester.
"Wonder how America's debt has nearly doubled since Jon Tester went to Washington?" asks the narrator in the spot. "Instead of being an independent voice for Montana, Tester's voted for Barack Obama's policies 95% of the time. For Obama's trillion dollar health care takeover. For the failed trillion dollar stimulus! And voted to raise the debt limit six times for a total of six trillion dollars."
Tester faces off in November against Republican Rep. Denny Rehberg. Two of the top non-partisan political handicappers, the Cook Political Report and the Rothenberg Political Report, both rate the race as a toss up.
The Crossroads commercial in Indiana takes on Rep. Joe Donnelly, the Democrat who will face off with State Treasurer Richard Mourdock in the general election, in the battle to replace Sen. Richard Lugar, who has served in office since 1976. Mourdock defeated Lugar in last month's Republican Senate primary in Indiana.
"Since Joe Donnelly went to Washington, America's debt has increased $3.5 billion per day – up $7 trillion in less than six years," says the narrator in the spot. "How? Donnelly has voted for trillions of Barack Obama's wasteful spending. For Obama's $1.7 trillion health care law. Or his wasteful $1 trillion stimulus. Donnelly even voted to raise the debt limit four times."
Cook and Rothenberg rate the Indiana race as "lean Republican."
The Crossroads ad in New Mexico is positive, touting former Rep. Heather Wilson, who earlier this week won the state's GOP Senate primary.
"What kind of senator do you want?" asks the narrator. "How about an Air Force veteran. A mother of three. Someone who has already worked to cut wasteful Washington spending and keep taxes low. Who has an independent record of standing up to her own party. In the Senate, Heather Wilson will stop the reckless spending and fight for good jobs."
Wilson will face off in November against Democratic Rep. Martin Heinrich in the battle to succeed Sen. Jeff Bingaman, the five term Democrat who decided against running for re-election. Cook rates New Mexico a toss up and Rothenberg ranks it as toss up/tilt Democrat.
"Voters in Montana, Indiana, and New Mexico understand that Karl Rove and the special interests are investing in Denny Rehberg, Richard Mourdock and Heather Wilson because they back an anti-middle class agenda that will cut Medicare benefits, privatize Social Security, and provide billions in giveaways to big oil companies and the wealthiest Americans," said Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Communications Director Matt Canter, in response to the Crossroads spots.
Crossroads GPS says it's spending $860,000 to run the spots in Indiana and Montana and American Crossroads says it's spending $260,000 to run the ad in New Mexico.
Crossroads GPS is the sister organization to American Crossroads, the independent super PAC that backs GOP causes and candidates. Crossroads GPS is currently spending around $25 million to run ads critical of the president over a four week period in crucial battleground states.
The Democrats currently have a 53-47 (51 Democrats and two independents who caucus with the party) majority in the Senate, but they are defending 23 of the 33 seats up for grabs this November.