October 15th, 2010
01:19 PM ET
12 years ago

Republicans spending big bucks linking Democrats to Pelosi

New York (CNN) – Tying Democratic candidates to Nancy Pelosi is one of the biggest Republican themes this election season.

The amount Republicans are spending to fill the airwaves with that message is staggering: $42 million dollars.

That's how much Republicans have spent so far on television ads linking their opponents to the House Speaker, according to data calculated for CNN by Evan Tracey of the Campaign Media Analysis Group, which tracks political ads.

Pelosi has appeared in 365 ads nationwide, which have run over 112,000 times, and those figures are climbing daily as Republicans continue to produce new political commercials attempting to paint Democrats as inside-`Washington liberals in lockstep with Pelosi.

Tracey says that doesn't even include a slew of ads where Pelosi is pictured, but not specifically named by the narrator.

Although other controversial political figures like Newt Gingrich, Bill Clinton and Ted Kennedy have been used in ads like this, Tracey says Pelosi is being used "at a level that is equal to or greater than any other in the past."

The ads are coming from virtually every corner of the GOP world: The National Republican Campaign Committee, outside GOP groups, and candidates themselves.

One of the NRCC's standard ads used in multiple races across the country begins by showing the number of times the Democratic candidate has allegedly voted for Pelosi's agenda, along with images of the Democrat with an unflattering picture of Pelosi.

For example, an ad running in Ohio says, "is Nancy Pelosi right over 90 percent of the time? That's how often Zach Space voted with her, including the $800 billion failed stimulus."

New York GOP challenger Ann Marie Buerkle began airing an ad this week against Democratic Congressman Dan Maffei that says "San Francisco already has one vote in Congress. It doesn't need ours."

And the Commission for Hope Growth and Opportunity, a Republican outside group, is running ads against Pennsylvania Democrat Paul Kanjorski, New Hampshire Democrat Carol Shea Porter and Florida Democrat Suzanne Kosmos in which their faces are on a gold coin with Pelosi's. A narrator, in a mocking tone, tells viewers they can own a "collectible for just your share of the national debt, plus all the taxes Pelosi can think of."

Republicans think Pelosi is such a valuable villain, she is even appearing in ads for candidates in local races that have nothing to do with Congress or Washington.

Steve French is running for State Senate in Alabama, and is airing a television ad against his Democratic opponent which says "Slade Blackwell is a candidate Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi would love."

A CNN/Opinion Research Poll taken last month shows why Republicans believe this strategy is so powerful. In that poll, 33% had a favorable opinion of Pelosi. 51% have an unfavorable opinion.
Pelosi has consistently shrugged off the fact that she is cast as the GOP bogeyman, or in this case, bogeywoman.

When asked about the new data showing $42 million spent in ads, Pelosi spokeswoman Jennifer Crider responded that "the Speaker is targeted for one reason – she's effective."

"These Republican ads show that they have no ideas and that the Republican agenda, being funded by the special interests, will ship good-paying American jobs," said Crider.

Filed under: 2010 • Nancy Pelosi • Republicans
soundoff (28 Responses)
  1. 18 Days until Socialism dies in the United States

    This leftist (Pelosi) has been calling the shots pretty much. Obozo has just been sitting back and letting Pelosi call the shots so why not tell it like it is? The DemocRATS did the exact same thing with Gingrich and Boehner. Pelosi is the leader of the leftists in the House and deserves to be called out for her far left laws. Isn't she proud of them anymore?

    October 15, 2010 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  2. ThinkAgain

    Republicans don't like Pelosi because she's a strong woman who's willing to stand up to big-money interests and put the American people first.

    Republicans like their woman nasty, dumb and pretty on the outside: Palin, Bachmann, O'Donnell. And then there's the second-string: Angle, Whitman, Fiorina.

    All nasty. All dumb. All anti-American in my book.

    October 15, 2010 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  3. Voter

    When all else fails, Republicans llie.

    October 15, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  4. Annie, Atlanta

    The U.S. (sic) Chamber of Commerce and Karl Rove, via donations from corporations, American and International, are trying to buy seats in Congress for the Republicans, who will ensure tax cuts for the rich, no regulation, and tax cuts for said corporations who ship American jobs overseas. "Democracy" now apparently comes with a price tag. Wonderful (for said corporations, that is).

    I just wonder how many jobs $3-5 Billion (the estimated GOP expenditure for these races) could have created. Guess we'll never know now that they've used the money to buy politicians instead. Are we going to let them?

    October 15, 2010 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  5. Dean

    The federal government has already done this work...it's called the Congressional Record.

    Don't vote for people based on what they tell you they've done, or what they're going to do. Base your decision on what they've actually done. If you do this, you will...

    Vote Republican.

    October 15, 2010 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  6. barry

    Pelosi, Reid, Obama they are all in over their head. The American people whether Conservative, Liberal, Independent need to worry because the new report for debt this year is over a trillion again. Blaming Bush won't fix this. You can talk about how it takes time and there hasn't been enough if you want to but spending more than you take in is the problem. No American family can get away with this. If you live beyond your means it eventually catches you. We have gotten away with it for too long. Any politician that talks about more spending the American people should turn on and put them out of office. We are running out of time to fix our problem. Obama, Reid, and Pelosi don't have the answers.

    October 15, 2010 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  7. GOP Scorched Earth Politics

    Better to support Pelosi/Reid than Boehner/McConnell. Even the Tea Klux Klan detests the GOP "Establishment" and their Big $ elitist sell-out agenda.

    October 15, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  8. Annie, Atlanta

    By the way, I'm a Democrat, and I admire Nancy Pelosi. Besides the fact that she's the first woman Speaker, she's got more guts than most of the men in Congress put together.

    October 15, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  9. vic nashville tn

    “Staggering $42 million dollars”. Well said CNN

    October 15, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  10. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    If a doctor performed a bad surgery on me and told me it wasn't his fault, I wouldn't go back to him to let him operate again. Well that's exactly what Republicans are telling the American people, they want to come back and continue their damage to the American people.

    October 15, 2010 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  11. normajean

    I thought the Repubs were saying that the Democrats are the big spenders. hey, voters, don't you think that if the repubs are spending this kind of money to oust Pelosi that they must be afraid of just how much power she really has, looks that way to me. GET OUT THERE DEMOCRATS AND VOTE...YOUR VOTE IS IMPORTANT AND SO ARE YOU. IT WILL TAKE ALL OF US AND OUR VOTES TO BRING OUR COUNTRY BACK UP TO WHERE IT SHOULD BE. VOTE, REMIND FRIENDS AND FAMILY, DON'T LET ANYONE FORGET, VOTE,VOTE!!!!!!WE'RE COUNTING ON EACH OTHER TO VOTE!!!!!!

    October 15, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  12. Monster Zero

    Pelosi has lost her marbles, wait there they are hanging around her neck!

    October 15, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  13. Fair is Fair

    Excellent strategy. The only people still supporting the wicked witch of the west are those dudes marching outside her castle chanting "Ore-eee-ohhh, yo-ho... ore-eee-ohh, yo-ho".

    October 15, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  14. marty

    I sincerely hope that Nancy Pelosi will be able to thumb her nose at all the naysayers soon. She 's held her own pretty well as a woman in a man's world and she's been more effective than many of them.

    October 15, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  15. Vote Democrats or die hard!

    If minorities don't show up this midterm elections, the right wing radio and Foxs News hate machine will call you lazy. You have to vote more than one time for change. If you win you can shut them up like in 2008. The choice is yours get out and vote and bring ten friends. Power to the people!

    October 15, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  16. T'SAH from Virginia

    And the MEDIA also AIR the ADS too – FREE!!!!!! WAKE UP America and smell the CORRUPTION!!!

    If the RepubliCAN'Ts get control of the HOUSE – they can just SIT BACK – continue to say NO – begin their little REPEALS they are promising and know DAMN WELL it’s not going ANYWHERE; they’ll block DADT because they are HATEFUL like that; they’ll pay back the BIG CORPs who sponsored them by PRIVITIZATION of everything they CLAIM should NOT be on a Federal Government level; they’ll try to impeach President Obama, which some are ‘slipping out’ and saying now; they are HOPING that America has FORGOTTEN who put us in this mess in the first place – ALL HELL WILL BREAK LOOSE if they manage to WIN the HOUSE!!!

    VOTERS are supposed to decide an election – NOT BIG CORPs!! Crossroads GPS and other so-called NOT FOR PROFIT (yea, RIGHT!!); Big Corps and Foreign influence organizations, etc., are coming in Your Community – Your District – Your Town – Your State and even YOUR HOME – TRYING to BUY your VOTE and BUY your ELECTION – PLEASE DON’T allow this to happen and PLEASE Don't VOTE for Politicians who these CROOKS are endorsing!! Let’s SHOW ‘EM – NO, not here in AMERICA!!!

    This is T’SAH from Virginia and I approve this message!! I am pleading for the American people to WAKE UP!!! I approve this message!

    October 15, 2010 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  17. jeff, alabama

    How stupid is my party becoming ?
    Why in the heck would you have to
    spend money to link democrats to
    Pelosi ??????????

    October 15, 2010 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  18. Augsbee

    I can't believe anyone out there would believe that Democrat candidates are not tied to Nancy Pelosi, she runs the whole show and controls all. How can they risk not be tied to Pelosi???????

    October 15, 2010 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  19. truth

    Nancy Peloski did great things for the poor to average Americans that makes up the majority of citizens. Linking her name to the Democratic Party should make people favor voting for her. The Republicans are such snakes that they can take a good deed and make it look bad to people who will benefit the most. What a waste. Vote Democrat unless you want the LUCIFERS of the Republican Party to rule the world.

    October 15, 2010 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  20. pkb

    This is a gimmick the GOP plays on Democrats every election. Pick a bogeyman or bogeywoman. Well, guess what? Every Democrat out there out to be proud of Nancy Pelosi. She is a tough cookie and not one to be pushed around by the Republicans. The Democrats should hold her up as an example of tenacity and toughness. She exemplifies what Democrats should strive to be. Don't push me around!

    October 15, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  21. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    This is a surprise for what reason? I would have liked other things to be accomplished by the Congress. With the Republicans being a problem in the Senate (to a lesser extent the House), it just stifled the possible progress this session of Congress could have made.

    October 15, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  22. carlos

    republiCONServatives......dirty money and kochtributions, rove and corruption, dirty money and kochtributions, rove and corruption, republiCONServatives

    October 15, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  23. stufit

    Great. This is an ugly, nasty woman whose mind has been addled by botox. she should be in prison.

    October 15, 2010 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  24. A powerful and historical woman

    It's a good thing to be linked to a WOMAN who has really shown that she can handle all the BS in Washington. I hope people remember all the AMAZING things she's done and realize that Sarah Palin is not the only woman of power. Heck, Palin PALES in comparison to Nancy Pelosi, both in intellect and as woman who has been demonized by politics.


    October 15, 2010 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  25. victim of democrat hypocrisy

    Well, she and Reid are the poster children for failed government that's out of touch with America.

    October 15, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
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