Politics

Super PAC to end all super PACs targets New Hampshire Senate race

The New Hampshire US Senate race is one of two in the crosshairs of the super PAC to that hopes to end all super PACs.

Mayday PAC announced Tuesday that it was supporting former New Hampshire state senator Jim Rubens, who is challenging former US senator Scott Brown and former US senator Bob Smith in a Republican primary. The winner will face incumbent Democratic US Senator Jeanne Shaheen.

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The PAC was started by Harvard Law School professor, author, and activist Lawrence Lessig, and Mark McKinnon, media consultant to both of George W. Bush’s presidential campaigns and John McCain’s 2008 campaign.

It raised $12 million in about two months to get five candidates elected to Congress who are willing to change the way campaigns are funded and, according to the PAC’s website, “reduce the stranglehold of big money in our politics.”

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Those first two candidates are Rubens and former Iowa state senator Staci Appel, a Democrat, who is running for an open congressional seat.

“We started with these two races to be crystal clear – it doesn’t matter who you are, what your party is, or what powerful friends you have,” Lessig said in a statement. “If you are standing in the way of fundamental reform, if you are supporting what has become a fully corrupt system of money in politics, then you should watch your back.”

Mayday PAC, according to its website, is “a crowdfunded super PAC to end all super PACs.” Then it goes on to say, “yes, including ourselves.” The money was raised by having smaller fundraising goals matched by larger contributions raised by high-dollar donors.

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The $12 million is the startup cost to fund the first wave of reformers — the five candidates during this election cycle — and use the lessons learned to get a large slate of candidates into office in 2016, with the aim of 218 in the House of Representatives and 60 in the Senate.

The PAC, according to its website, supports Rubens because he supports public financing for elections and an act that would give taxpayers up to $200 vouchers, which would be signed over to the candidate they support.

“Americans of all political stripes have had enough of systemic corruption,” McKinnon said in the statement. “I hope Republican and Democratic candidates for Congress take advantage of this opportunity to inoculate themselves – and firmly position themselves as supporters of reform.”

Akilah Johnson can be reached at ajohnson@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @akjohnson1922.
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