Right-Wing MoveOn Rival Raises $250M

Bush allies launch advocacy arm to target 2008 races
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 21, 2008 5:20 PM CST

(Newser) – A new political advocacy group pitching itself as a right-wing answer to MoveOn is mobilizing to spend $250 million to support candidates in 2008, more than twice the figure spent by the largest liberal group in 2004. Freedoms Watch's principals are two former Bush officials, Talking Points Memo reports, and the group’s spokesman is former Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer.

Freedoms Watch will take particular aim at vulnerable congressional seats; the group enjoyed its first major impact in December’s special House election in Ohio, where an ad depicting Latinos scurrying under fences helped propel a Republican to Washington. MoveOn’s founder rejected any parallel with the group, telling the Washington Post that his organization is independent of the party and funded by small donors, while Freedoms Watch is  "doing attack ads by Beltway operatives, financed by billionaires, at the request of the White House." (Read more attack ad stories.)

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