The Senate Leadership Fund, a GOP Super PAC aligned with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), announced on Friday that it was withdrawing an earlier commitment to spend at least $5.6 million on television advertisements on this year’s New Hampshire Senate race less than three weeks before Election Day.
The McConnell Super PAC had listed the New Hampshire race as one of its top targets to flip to the Republican side of the ledger all year. GOP nominee and former Army Gen. Don Bolduc is taking on incumbent Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH) in the November 8 general election.
Don Bolduc is within two points of beating Democratic Senator Maggie Hassan in New Hampshire (49-47). As heating oil prices and 401k losses hit home Bolduc will win. Hard to understand why McConnell’s superpac pulled out. Hope others will step in to help win the seat for GOP.
— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) October 22, 2022
Senate Leadership Fund president Steven Law told reporters that the PAC has decided to shift resources “to where they can be most effective to achieve our ultimate goal: winning the majority.”
The defunding of the Bolduc campaign comes after the National Republican Senatorial Committee made a similar announcement two weeks ago. That committee is the re-election organization for the Republican Senate Caucus.
That fund had already reserved a series of TV ads in the New Hampshire region before canceling. It had committed $23 million in funding before pulling out of the key battleground state.
Notably, the funding commitments made by both organizations connected to McConnell came before Bolduc won the GOP primary election held on September 13.
Bolduc successfully campaigned in the Granite State by promising he would not support McConnell to be the Republican leader in the Senate if he is elected, whether or not he would be part of a GOP majority.
Bolduc campaign spokesperson Kate Constantini responded to the latest announcement with a statement that said the candidate “has defied the naysayers from the beginning and that’s the same approach he is going to take through the finish line to victory.”
Bolduc has appeared in campaign events with former Hawaii congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, beginning less than a week after she announced she was parting ways with the Democratic Party. Gabbard said she supports Bolduc because he stands for fundamental freedoms and will “stand up to those in Washington who seek to undermine our God-given civil liberties enshrined in the Constitution.”
According to Federal Election Commission disclosures, Hassan raised $9.6 million in the quarter ending on September 30, compared to $972,000 for Bolduc. On that date, Hassan’s campaign had $4.8 million in cash on hand, compared to $768,000 for Bolduc.
RealClearPolitics (RCP) rates the New Hampshire race as one of seven “tossup” Senate contests. The GOP must win at least four of those tossup states and every state it is favored in to retake control of the upper chamber.
The current RCP polling average has Hassan leading Bolduc by 5.4 percentage points, 49.7% to 44.3%. However, RCP also shows that polling in New Hampshire has underestimated support for the GOP at this point in the last three election cycles by 5.8%, meaning the race is likely more of a dead heat currently.