November 1st, 2012

Majority PAC, a Washington, D.C., based super PAC trying to help Democrats keep control of the U.S. Senate, has purchased television advertising in Hawaii on behalf of U.S. Rep. Mazie Hirono, sources say.

Hirono, a Democrat, is facing former Gov. Linda Lingle, a Republican.

*Update: The amount of the ad buy was $126,675, according to federal campaign-finance filings.

Retired Maj. Gen. Robert G.F. Lee, Lingle’s campaign manager, said the ad buy indicates that the campaign is competitive. “Hirono and her partisan mainland operatives view Hawaii’s U.S. Senate seat as one pawn in a national political party strategy,” he said in a statement. “However, Linda Lingle views this election and the opportunity to serve in the U.S. Senate as a chance to do what is right for the people of Hawaii, not for her political party.”

In late October, Fund for Freedom Committee, a mainland super PAC tied to the Republican Governors Association, spent more than $335,000 on advertising in Hawaii on behalf of Lingle. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has spent more than $1.2 million on behalf of Lingle during the primary and general election. Several labor and women’s groups have sponsored ads to help Hirono worth six figures.

“It’s not only disingenuous but downright hypocritical for her to denounce an independent group that supports keeping Democrats and a middle-class agenda the majority in the U.S Senate,” Betsy Lin, Hirono’s campaign manager, said in an email. “But at the end of the day, as we’ve discovered over the course of this campaign, Lingle, the national Republicans and their allies are going to say and do anything they need to do to win this Hawaii Senate seat and take control of the United States Senate.”

Majority PAC had announced on Wednesday that it would spend more than $7 million in its final advertising push to help Democrats before next Tuesday’s elections. The interest group identified competitive Senate campaigns in seven states, but not in Hawaii.

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