• Wed. Nov 30th, 2022

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Cortez Masto to face $2M in Spanish-language attack ads in homestretch of tight Nevada Senate race

The first Latina elected to the Senate will face a barrage of negative ads on Spanish-language TV and radio in Nevada as an outside group prepares to spend nearly $2 million to back her Republican challenger — a sizable investment in what’s expected to be the most influential electorate in November.

In spending plans first shared with NBC News, the conservative super PAC Club for Growth Action said it will paint Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto as soft on crime while boosting Republican Adam Laxalt in what has become one of the tightest Senate races in the country.

“So weak on crime it’s dangerous,” the new ad declares.

Image: Adam Laxalt
Adam Laxalt speaks at an election night event in Reno, Nev., on June 14.Trevor Bexon / Getty Images file

When reached for comment, Cortez Masto’s campaign highlighted an endorsement from the Nevada Police Union and provided a statement from the senator. “Both as Nevada’s attorney general and in the Senate, I have worked with law enforcement to ensure our officers have the resources they need to keep our communities safe,” Cortez Masto said in a statement.

The advertising campaign cuts into the Spanish-language ad spending advantage Cortez Masto has held for months. Since the state’s June 14 primary, Cortez Masto and outside Democratic groups led by the Somos PAC have spent $2.7 million on Spanish-language ads, compared to $176,000 spent by Republicans.

Club for Growth Action expects to spend $10 million in Nevada in the general election — including the Spanish-language ads — more than it has spent in any other battleground state, a spokesman said.

Latinos are expected to make up 20% of the voters in the midterms. NBC News reported Sunday that Democrats are seeing signs that Latinos will skip this year’s election, which could end up tilting races in favor of Republican candidates. At the same time, many Latinos have negative views of Laxalt.

Club for Growth Action said the spending is the “single largest investment in Hispanic media in the race by any Republican group.”

“Nevada has the most important Senate race in the country,” David McIntosh, Club for Growth Action’s president, said in a statement. “While Democrats have long taken the Hispanic vote for granted, it’s important to reach this audience and let them know where the candidates stand on the issues that matter like crime, inflation, and the economy.”

Marc Caputo contributed.