2012 elections
6:11 pm
Fri November 2, 2012

Northwest money helps pay for swing state ads

Originally published on Fri November 2, 2012 8:16 am

Northwest voters are spared most presidential campaign ads. But Northwest money still plays a part in them. A handful of big spenders from the region are bolstering major super PACs behind a barage of ads now hitting swing states.

Florida voters might thank some wealthy Washington residents for a recent ad blitz targeting President Obama. People working in the financial services sector around Seattle have contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars to Karl Rove's American Crossroads. It's a super PAC that supports Republican candidates.

That group also got a recent $200,000 boost from Frank Vandersloot in Idaho. Vandersloot has been among the who's who of campaign financiers from the start.

Super PACs, unlike candidates, are allowed to take in unlimited contributions. Nationwide, Republican super PACs have been winning the money game. But in the Northwest, it looks a little different.

Priorities USA backs President Obama. It's received $1.5 million from Seattle philanthropist Ann Wyckoff in the last three months. Other major Democratic super PAC supporters include Portland publisher Win McCormack, the Tulalip Tribe in Washington, and the founder of Issaquah-based Costco.

When you look at direct contributions to the candidates, Presidential Obama has received twice as much from the Northwest as Governor Romney.

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