Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Billionaire Ricketts spending $12 million on ads for Romney, GOP

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By Daniel Strauss

A prominent Republican billionaire is bankrolling a new advertising campaign through the super-PAC he funds.
Joe Ricketts, the founder of TD Ameritrade Inc. and owner of the Chicago Cubs, is spending a total of $12 million on advertising supporting Mitt Romney and congressional Republican races, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

Ricketts will fund the advertising blitz through his super-PAC, the Ending Spending Action Fund.

The ads begin airing this week, according to the newspaper.
Ricketts was the center of the political spotlight in May after The New York Times reported that he was considering funding a provocative advertising campaign that would tie President Obama to controversial sermons by the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

"The world is about to see Jeremiah Wright and understand his influence on Barack Obama for the first time in a big, attention-arresting way," the proposal said, according to the Times report.

The ad proposal appeared to create a rift between Ricketts and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Obama's former chief of staff. Negotiations between Emanuel and Ricketts over tax breaks to help renovate Wrigley Field, where the Cubs play, halted after news broke about the ad campaign.
Ricketts rejected the ad campaign shortly after the proposal became public.

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