The Club for Growth, the arch-conservative Washington group that Pat Toomey led before mounting his Senate run, has entered the fray in its former president's race, launching an advertisement hitting Democrat Joe Sestak with that ugly epithet: liberal.

The ad follows themes similar to Toomey's and other outside groups attacking the second-term Congressman who felled Arlen Specter in the Democratic primary. It cites Sestak's votes for the "mortgage bailout" -- providing $300 billion in loans to underwater homeowners and rescuing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in July 2008 -- and cap-and-trade bill (referred to as a "massive energy tax that could kill jobs here"), along with his assertion that the stimulus bill wasn't big enough, as evidence that he's too liberal for Pennsylvania.

"We can't afford Joe Sestak's liberal schemes in the Senate," the announcer intones.

The latter two are pretty common campaign themes, but this is the first attack I can recall over the mortgage bill, which passed the Senate 72-13 and was signed by President George W. Bush. The ad is below:


The DSCC responds by pointing out that the Club for Growth is largely funded by folks with ties to a certain section of Lower Manhattan and seeing how many times it can get "Wall Street" into a single quote. The answer: four.

"Wall Street derivatives pioneer Pat Toomey said he stopped working on Wall Street two decades ago, but that hasn’t stopped his Wall Street buddies from rushing to bailout him out today," said DSCC National Press Secretary Deirdre Murphy. "Already on the defense in all corners of Pennsylvania for his deep ties to Wall Street and over his history of pushing for Social Security privatization, it’s fitting that Toomey would turn to those closest to him for a bailout.”

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