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DSCC uses first general election ad to defend endangered Cortez Masto in Nevada

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is using its first post-Labor Day television advertisement to defend Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), suggesting the party views her as exceedingly vulnerable to Republican challenger Adam Laxalt.

The new DSCC spot hits Laxalt, the former Nevada attorney general, on the issue of abortion, a strategy Democrats are executing in several contests as they seek to quash Republican efforts to reclaim the 50-50 Senate in the midterm elections. The ad shows clips of Laxalt celebrating Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the Supreme Court ruling that overturned Roe v. Wade and eliminated federal protections for abortion rights.


“Adam Laxalt praised the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade,” the ad’s voiceover says as the spot opens. “Adam Laxalt even called Roe v. Wade a ‘joke.’ … Adam Laxalt: not for us.” The ad is part of the DSCC’s previously announced $8.4 million investment in Nevada to boost Cortez Masto’s reelection prospects.

In choosing Nevada to air its first television spot, the DSCC appears to be acknowledging Cortez Masto is in trouble. Recent polling would back such fears up. The senator is leading Laxalt by an average of 1.7 percentage points in three mid-August surveys, making the race a virtual toss-up. Republicans are not surprised, having grown increasingly confident the former state attorney general is headed to victory in November.

Laxalt, endorsed by both former President Donald Trump and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), was the consensus Republican pick for Senate in Nevada. He was elected Nevada attorney general in 2014, a GOP wave year, but lost his campaign for governor in 2018, a Democratic wave year. The knock on Laxalt is that he has proven to be a weak candidate over the years.


Even in victory eight years ago, he only garnered 46% of the vote.

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