Lincoln Project under fire
Some news outlets minimizing scandal
The anti-Trump Lincoln Project, which is now under massive scrutiny following cascading scandals and resignations, spent massive amounts of money on losing candidates in U.S. Senate races last year, according to FEC records.
During the 2020 election cycle, the super PAC organized by former Republican operatives spent millions of dollars against Republican Senate candidates and for Democratic candidates, in addition to its tens of millions spent in attack ads on former President Donald Trump.
The group spent six figures on 10 Senate races. And where the PAC spent the most money, its favored candidates lost by significant margins.
The Lincoln Project spent nearly $4.3 million trying to unseat GOP Alaska Sen. Dan Sullivan. He won his race by more than 12 percentage points.
Dec. 30: Sen. Lindsey Graham speaks to members of the media outside the West Wing after his meeting with President Trump. Graham is one of several GOP senators whose 2020 challengers were supported by the Lincoln Project. Graham cruised to victory against Democrat Jaime Harrison.
It spent more than $2.7 million trying to elect Democrat Steve Bullock in his race against Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont. Daines won by 10 points.
It spent more than $2.4 million in South Carolina, where Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., cruised to a double-digit victory over Democrat Jaime Harrison.
The Lincoln Project dropped nearly $1.7 million opposing Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, who beat opponent Sara Gideon by nearly double-digits.
It also spent more than $464,000 against Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who beat his opponent Amy McGrath by nearly 20 percentage points.
LINCOLN PROJECT CO-FOUNDER STEVE SCHMIDT RESIGNS
One of the closest races that The Lincoln Project was involved in was the North Carolina Senate race. Republican Sen. Thom Tillis beat scandal-ridden opponent Cal Cunningham by just under two percentage points, despite nearly $200,000 in Lincoln Project spending.
In this June 30, 2020, file photo, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, speaks during a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. Collins’ reelection win was considered one of the biggest political comebacks of 2020. (Al Drago/Pool via AP, File)
And Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, won her race against Democrat Theresa Greenfield by more than six percentage points. The Lincoln Project spent more than $226,000 on that race.
The Lincoln Project was involved in some races that were successful. In Arizona, former Sen. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., lost to Sen. Mark Kelly, D-Ariz., who was helped by more than $158,000 in Lincoln Project spending.
And its most significant victories came in Georgia.
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The Lincoln Project altogether spent more than $1.2 million in the two Georgia Senate races eventually won by Democratic Sens. Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock in runoff elections on Jan. 5.
The spending on Senate races by the Lincoln Project paled in comparison to its spending in the presidential election. It spent more than $33 million against Trump and more than $2.2 million in favor of now-President Biden.
The future is unclear for the group that was once known for its aggressive social media ads and prolific fundraising abilities in the wake of scandals that implicate the character of its founders and questions about the group’s finances. It raked in more than $87 million during the 2020 election cycle.
Sid Jasma Jr., a Lincoln Project donor, told Fox News on Monday: “I want accountability from our politicians and I also want accountability from anyone else. And if there is a failure at the Lincoln Project, we need to call a spade a spade and account for that.”
Fox News’ Bill Mears contributed to this report
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