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Democratic Senate candidate Cheri Beasley at a campaign event on in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Democratic Senate candidate Cheri Beasley at a campaign event on Sept. 17, 2022, in Charlotte, N.C.Sean Rayford / Getty Images file

Democrats ramp up spending in North Carolina Senate race

The Senate Majority PAC is planning to spend an additional $4 million on TV ads to boost Cheri Beasley.


Democrats are ramping up their spending in North Carolina's Senate race, where former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley is taking on GOP Rep. Ted Budd.

Senate Majority PAC, a super PAC aligned with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, is reserving an additional $4 million in TV ads in the race, according to spending figures shared first with NBC News. The two-week ad reservation will begin next week and the additional spending brings the group's investment in the race to $10.5 million.

The new ad reservation comes as Republicans have started to outspend Democrats on the airwaves in recent weeks, thanks in large part to an influx of money from the Senate Leadership Fund, a GOP super PAC aligned with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

But Beasley has continued to outspend Budd on the TV airwaves, which is notable since candidates receive lower rates for TV ads, so candidate money can go farther than outside groups.

Beasley has focused her recent messaging on her bipartisan support and criticizing Budd for various votes in the House, launching a recent ad focused on drug prices.

Budd, meanwhile, has tried to tie Beasley to President Joe Biden and he's focused his recent advertising on rising prices.

Recent polling has shown a close race, but Democrats have struggled to win North Carolina Senate races in recent election cycles. Trump won the state by 1 percentage point in 2020 as GOP Sen. Thom Tillis won re-election by 2 points, defeating Democrat Cal Cunningham, whose campaign was upended by allegations of an extramarital affair.

The Cook Political Report rates the North Carolina Senate race Lean Republican.