Outside spending on Connecticut’s closely contested race for governor reached a record $18.2 million in 2014, a five-fold increase from 2010 that dwarfed the $6.5 million in public financing allotted to each of the major-party candidates. But fears of heavy independent spending on legislative races went unrealized.
A new player entered Connecticut’s race for governor Saturday as a “dark money” group from Ohio contributed $1.17 million to Grow Connecticut, the super PAC behind a $6.7 million advertising campaign to defeat Gov. Dannel P. Malloy. Outside spending now is $15 million.
Outside spending on Connecticut’s deadlocked race for governor blew past $10 million Friday night as the Republican and Democratic governors associations reported another $1.4 million in expenditures, mostly for attack ads.
Another $1.2 million flowed into Connecticut’s deadlocked race for governor over the past 48 hours as two super PACs allied with the Democratic and Republican governors’ associations fought for superiority in a war of negative advertising. Outside politicians are joining the flow of dollars into the state, with visits next week from President Obama, Bill Clinton and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
The Republican Governors Association contributed $800,000 Friday to a super PAC backing Republican Tom Foley, while two national public-employee unions put up $1.1 million to back Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, the first-term Democratic incumbent, according to filings late Friday night.
Grow Connecticut, as independent expenditure group buying air time to oppose the re-election of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, was created last year by the campaign-finance law firm of Tom Foley, the Republican nominee for governor, after Foley’s ties to another super PAC were exposed by an elections enforcement case.
A tangle of shared donors, consultants and a prominent Washington, D.C., law firm link Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Foley to two independent-expenditure groups, raising a question of illegal coordination should either group air ads to influence the 2014 race for governor. One, whose existence is not widely known, is led by Foley’s campaign treasurer.
As treasurer of a Super PAC, Charlie Spies spent $142 million in support of Mitt Romney in 2012, using 90 percent of the money to attack Romney’s rivals. He is a believer, defender and advocate of the right to make unlimited, independent campaign expenditures. And he is Tom Foley’s lawyer.
State elections officials accepted a settlement Wednesday with Republican gubernatorial hopeful Tom Foley over a $15,504 poll he commissioned last spring through his out-of-state, independent political group, Voters for Good Government.