Dem 51
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GOP 49
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Tester Runs His First Ad

One of the three or four races where an incumbent Democratic senator could lose is Montana, where Sen. Jon Tester faces his toughest test ever. He just launched his first ad:

The ad emphasizes that his family has been farming in Montana for three generations. Why does he emphasize this? Well, he has two potential opponents. Rep Matt Rosendale (R-MT) is something of a carpetbagger from Maryland and has a distinct Maryland accent. When Montanans hear his ads later, some of them are going to focus on that. The other potential candidate, and the one strongly favored by the NRCC, is millionaire Tim Sheehy, a former Navy SEAL who owns an aerial firefighting company. Although he was born in Bozeman, MT, he spent much of his life out of state, returning only in 2014. He rails against property developers who buy up huge tracts of unspoiled land and build houses on them when he himself owns many properties and thousands of acres of land.

So Tester's pitch will be that his family has been farming in the state for generations and knows what life as a Montana farmer is really like, while the other guys are (rich) interlopers who know nothing about the life of a Montana farmer. In Montana, that pitch could well resonate with a lot of voters. (V)

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