Politics & Government

Hagan responds to critics’ new ads

U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan had a terse response Tuesday to another wave of TV ads that a conservative group is running against her.

“The big agenda that people need to be asking is, who is it who’s funding these ads and what is their real agenda?” she said, adding that their agenda includes tax cuts for the wealthy.

Hagan responded to a question about the latest attacks by Americans for Prosperity, a group started with support of the conservative Koch brothers. The ad attacks Hagan over her support for President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

The group announced Tuesday that it’s spending $1.4 million on the fourth wave of advertising in recent months. The group has spent $6.5 million in anti-Hagan ads, the most of any group.

Hagan’s comments came during a conference call with reporters to announce her sponsorship with Alaska Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski of a new sportsman’s bill. Among other things, the measure would open more public lands to hunters.

Hagan declined to specifically answer a question about how much she believes the president and his heath care initiative are hurting her re-election campaign.

Earlier, her campaign spokeswoman Sadie Weiner called the ad “just another baseless smear campaign from a Koch brothers-backed group that doesn’t disclose its donors, doesn’t speak for North Carolinians, and has a record of airing ads that fact checkers call ‘false.’ ”

David and Charles Koch are wealthy owners of an energy company and back a network of political organizations. The Hill newspaper has reported that one, Americans for Prosperity, has spent more than $22 million on ads tying Democratic incumbents to the Affordable Care Act.