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Klobuchar backed by first super PAC ahead of Nevada debate, caucuses


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Klobuchar backed by first super PAC ahead of Nevada debate, caucuses

The novel PAC, Kitchen Table Conversations, has spent over $726,000 in ads.February 19, 2020, 6:02 PM8 min read When Sen. Amy Klobuchar — a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate — announced her campaign on last February, she immediately distanced herself from political action committees. “I don’t come from money. But what I do have is this:…

Klobuchar backed by first super PAC ahead of Nevada debate, caucuses

The novel PAC, Kitchen Table Conversations, has spent over $726,000 in ads.

February 19, 2020, 6:02 PM

8 min read

When Sen. Amy Klobuchar — a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate — announced her campaign on last February, she immediately distanced herself from political action committees.

“I don’t come from money. But what I do have is this: I have grit,” she said in the Tweet, where she announced she would steer clear from big money.

A year later, novel super PAC Kitchen Table Conversations has announced they are backing the Minnesota senator.

With the Nevada caucuses coming up on Feb. 22, the super PAC committed to launch “six figure buys” in a “new effort” to introduce the senator to voters in Nevada, South Carolina and the 14 Super Tuesday states.

“We believe Amy Klobuchar is the only candidate that can unite Independents, Democrats and even moderate Republicans,” a spokesperson for Kitchen Table Conversations told ABC News.

Kitchen Table Conversations, which filed with the Federal Election Commission on Friday, listed Minnesotan political fundraisers Richard Carlbom and Kristen McMullen as the individuals who spearheaded it.

As of Wednesday morning, the super PAC has invested over $726,000 in TV, cable and digital ads in Nevada and South Carolina, according to the ad analysis firm CMAG.

A spokesperson for the Klobuchar campaign told ABC News that they stand by their statement of not wanting help from super PACs.

But, the campaign cannot control the independent actions of any super PACs.

“Our investment to introduce Amy to voters is just to make sure voters know the same Amy that we know,” said a spokesperson from Kitchen Table Conversations.

The support from her first super PAC comes after Klobuchar’s unexpected success in recent Democratic debates.

Following the last debate in New Hampshire, Klobuchar won six delegates, coming in third place behind Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who was the top performer, and former South Bend, Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg.

Klobuchar has been recognized for her debate performance, most recently going after Buttigieg in the last debate — co-hosted by ABC News and partner WMUR. Klobuchar’s campaign announced they brought in $2 million in less than 24 hours following the debate — and $12 million within a week after it.

During the same debate, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren positioned herself and Klobuchar as the only two candidates not receiving help from super PACs.

“Everyone on this stage except Amy and me is either a billionaire or is receiving help from PACs that can do unlimited spending,” Warren said.

Since that statement, Warren too has been backed by a super PAC — called “Persist” — airing nearly $800,000 in ads to support her.

Kitchen Table Conversations has put two pro-Klobuchar ads on the airwaves thus far. Rolled out across Nevada in English and Spanish on Tuesday, one advertisement focuses on the senator’s personal experience after her daughter Abigail was born.

In the storyline, Klobuchar advocates for a bipartisan state law passed in Minnesota guaranteeing mothers and their babies a 48-hour hospital stay.

“That’s what Amy Klobuchar does — sees a problem, fixes it and wins when it matters,” a female narrator says in the ad.

A second ad lists the senator’s campaign promises if elected president, including rejoining the climate agreement, lowering prescription drug costs and expanding benefits for veterans.

Klobuchar will take the stage in Las Vegas on Wednesday night for the next Democratic primary debate, co-hosted by NBC, MSNBC and The Nevada Independent.

ABC News’ Lissette Rodriguez and Soo Rin Kim contributed reporting.

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