by Mariana Dale
The Congressional District One race has become a money magnent in the weeks leading up to the election. A slew of new political ads has accompanied the spending.
The National Republican Congressional Committee debuted "Shameful," on Sunday, Oct. 28. The ad claims that Kirkpatrick "wasted our money on 'Obamacare,' the failed stimulus, and then she spent thousands on taxpayer funded bonuses for her staff."
In the last week, the NRCC has funneled $831,280 into media opposing Democratic opponent Ann Kirkpatrick. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee filed $279,391 in the same period. On Friday, Oct. 26, they released an ad that targeted Paton's work as a lobbyist. The characterization builds on the "Payday Paton," moniker that has persisted throughout the campaign.
Other big spenders in the last week of October were Women Vote!, a PAC that supports Pro-Choice Democratic women that spent about $102,000 in mailhouse buys opposing Paton. In September, the group, also known as Emily's List, announced an eight-part mailing campaign on Paton's views of women's healthcare.
"Republican Jonathan Paton’s extreme position on women’s health care is the single highest testing negative among women voters," the group wrote in their blog. In the past they've said Paton was dishonest about his position on abortion.
The Arizona Pipe Trades PAC, a group of Plumbers and Pipefitters, also spent almost $57,000 on radio buys in support of Kirkpatrick.
In all, more than $5 million dollars has been designated to the huge Arizona district that encompasses much of Coconino Country as well as Marana and Oro Valley. Though Democrats hold an 8 percentage point lead in voter registration and the race status has been deemed a "Toss-up," in recent weeks.
On Sunday, Flagstaff publication The Arizona Daily Sun published their endorsement of Kirkpatrick, who has spent much of her adult life working as a Northern Arizona attorney.