Planned Parenthood to target 8 states, spend $20 million as part of midterm battle plan

Washington ()Planned Parenthood’s political arm is targeting eight states with competitive Senate and governor’s races in its largest-ever midterm election campaign.

The offensive is set to cost $20 million, an initial mark that the organization’s officials say is all but certain to be exceeded.
The investment from Planned Parenthood Action Fund and Planned Parenthood Votes, the organization’s political entities, makes it one of the biggest outside spending forces in Democratic politics headed into a cycle in which the party sees a rare opportunity to pick off GOP seats across the map.
It’s part of Planned Parenthood’s effort to sustain the momentum of the Women’s March the day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration and turn women’s health care and reproductive rights into issues that drive voters to the ballot box to oppose Trump and GOP candidates.
The initial list of targets includes eight states: Arizona, Florida, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
It comes on top of $4.5 million spent on last year’s governor’s races in Virginia and New Jersey.
The groups are set to announce their plans later Thursday.
The targeted states are part of a two-for-one approach of prioritizing states with competitive races this fall for both Senate seats that could help Democrats keep Trump in check and governors’ offices that are crucial to the redistricting process after the 2020 Census.
“This is our last chance to flip some of those governors’ seats before redistricting,” said Deirdre Schifeling, the executive director of Planned Parenthood Votes. “A lot of those states have governors who have been terrible for women, terrible for access to reproductive health care.”
Arizona and Nevada are particularly important: The states represent Democrats’ two best chances of picking off GOP-held Senate seats this cycle, with Nevada Sen. Dean Heller seen as vulnerable in a state Hillary Clinton won and Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake retiring in what’s rapidly becoming a swing state.



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