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Group with Tea Party ties tries to rally around GOP Senate hopeful Michael J. Sullivan

Could US Senate hopeful Michael J. Sullivan get a boost from the national Tea Party faithful?

Such is the hope of the Conservative Campaign Committee -- formerly known as the Campaign to Defeat Barack Obama -- which is trying to rally conservatives nationwide around Sullivan’s race for US Senate.

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In an email with the subject line, “Boston, here we come,” committee member Lloyd Marcus wrote that the Tea Party affiliated group has been “putting together a secret plan to launch our independent expenditure campaign” for Sullivan.

Marcus lauded Sullivan as the conservative in the race and called his Republican rivals, Gabriel E. Gomez and Daniel B. Winslow, “liberal Republican opponents,” pointing to their past support for Democrats.

He said the group hopes to raise $45,000 for a radio campaign and $115,000 for TV ads on Sullivan’s behalf. The committee, he said, has already raised $25,000.

In an email to the Globe today, Marcus said his group is working on production of both the radio & TV ads and called Sullivan a “common sense conservative.”

It remains to be seen how much interest the committee will generate for Sullivan, who has already picked up support from many in-state conservatives as the only abortion opponent in the race. Three years ago, support from the then-surging Tea Party helped fuel Scott Brown’s out-of-nowhere win in the special election for Senate.

The Democrats running in the special Senate election -- US Representatives Edward J. Markey and Stephen F. Lynch -- have reached an agreement barring outside TV and radio advertising on their behalf, a move designed to keep third-party groups from slinging mud for either candidate.

But the three Republicans vying for the primary nomination have declined to participate, leaving outside groups, such as the Conservative Campaign Committee, free to run ads.

Sullivan campaign manager Paul Moore told the Globe that he was not aware of any institutional Tea Party support for his candidate but added that “anyone who wants to get out and help Mike is welcome to get out and help Mike.”

“We don’t have a litmus test for someone who walks in the door and wants to lick an envelope,” he said.

Jim O’Sullivan of the Globe Staff contributed to this report. Stephanie Ebbert can be reached at ebbert@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @stephanieebbert.
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