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AK-Sen: DSCC Smells GOP Blood In The Water, Endorses Dr. Al Gross (I) For U.S. Senate

4 min read

Here’s some big news today out of Alaska courtesy of the DSCC:

Senator Catherine Cortez Masto, Chair of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, issued the following statement endorsing Dr. Al Gross in the Alaska U.S. Senate race:

“Dr. Al Gross is a lifelong Alaskan who understands the unique needs of his state and is building a strong campaign that reflects Alaska’s fierce independence. As a physician, he knows how Alaskans are struggling with the rising costs of health care, and is running to make coverage affordable for all Alaskans, and to protect coverage for those with pre-existing conditions. Al knows what’s right, isn’t afraid to fight for it and we are proud to support his campaign.”

Dr. Al Gross is an orthopedic surgeon, commercial fisherman, and lifelong Alaskan who will fight to protect Alaska’s economy and way of life in the U.S. Senate. Since entering the race, Dr. Gross has earned endorsements from Alaskans across the political spectrum, including the Alaska Democratic Party, and outraised incumbent Senator Dan Sullivan by more than $300,000 last quarter.

It’s true, Gross has been doing an excellent job fundraising for his Senate campaign

U.S. Senate candidate Al Gross outpaced U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan in the latest fundraising period, but there’s plenty of ground between the Democratic Party-endorsed independent and the incumbent Republican.

According to the latest reports filed with the Federal Election Commission, Gross collected $790,017.37 from individual contributions between July 1 and the end of September. Sullivan raised $486,881.75 from individual contributions during that same time period.

Sullivan took in an additional $167,300 from political action committees, putting Sullivan’s total fundraising for the period at $654,181.75. Gross contributed $200,000 of his own money and took $10,000 from political action committees, putting his total at $1.01 million.

The Alaska Democratic Party has also endorsed Gross’ campaign:

The Alaska Democratic Party has endorsed independent candidate Dr. Al Gross for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Republican Dan Sullivan.
Three years ago, the ADP changed its rules allowing non-affiliated and undeclared candidates to run in the Democratic primary and secure the party nomination.
“Dr. Gross is a born and bred Alaskan who holds Alaskan values close. He has an understanding of Alaska and a commitment to our people that we have never seen from Dan Sullivan,” said Casey Steinau, Alaska Democratic Party chair. “To Dr. Gross, Alaska comes first – always. It is a testament to his competence, his policies, and his dedication to the state that he has won our early endorsement. Dan Sullivan has proven time and again that his priority is simply being a yes-man for Donald Trump. Alaska deserves better than that.”

Gross has also been getting some help from some big-name Alaska Democrats:

— Former Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska) is hosting a fundraiser in early December for Al Gross, the independent candidate challenging GOP Sen. Dan Sullivan. Gross, who outraised Sullivan last quarter, is running as an independent but has the endorsement of the state Democratic Party.

And Republicans are worried that U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan (R. AK) could actually be vulnerable:

Top Republicans are suddenly paying close to attention to a sleepy Alaska Senate race after a little-known independent challenger with the state Democratic Party’s endorsement outraised incumbent Dan Sullivan in the third quarter.

Sullivan, part of the Republican wave that won control of the Senate in 2014, raised slightly more than $654,000 in the July to September fundraising period. That was less than the $1 million collected by Al Gross, even if you subtract the $200,000 in personal funds included in that total. Privately, that disparity is raising eyebrows among some Republicans, who worry Sullivan might be too complacent.

Lindsay Kavanaugh, a senior strategist for the Alaska Democratic Party, said Republican concerns are not misplaced. Sullivan, she said, “is not as in tune to what’s going on in this state as he should be.”

We only need to win 3 Senate seats to get a Majority along with winning the White House or we will need to win four seats if we don't win the White House. We also need to get Senate Democrats to either abolish or reform the filibuster rules and to play it safe, we should get more than 51 seats if we need to resort to the use of the Budget Reconciliation Rules if we want to pass the Public Option. Alaska, like Kansas, is a potentially quite surprise race and as Rolling Stone pointed out, our path to the majority includes flipping seats in Colorado, Arizona, Maine, North Carolina, Iowa and both seats in Georgia. Along with Kansas, Texas and Kentucky are also races to watch out. We’re still waiting to see who emerges as the best candidate in Texas to take on U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R. TX). Democrats also have a star candidate in Jaime Harrison (D. SC) who has been raising a lot of money to unseat U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R. SC). Whether it’s a red state, purple state or blue state, Democrats need to be aggressive in finding their path to a Senate Majority and with the DSCC jumping into the Alaska Senate race, this is a great sign they are taking this seriously.

So let’s keep up the moment and flip this seat. Click here to donate and get involved with Dr. Gross’ campaign.

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