Politics

Rohrabacher Challenger Keirstead Drops $152,000 for First TV Ad

Ad goes after Trump in district that Hillary Clinton won in 2016

Democratic candidate for California's 48th District Hans Keirstead released his first ad. (Keirstead campaign via YouTube)

One of the Democratic challengers to Rep. Dana Rohrabacher is spending $152,000 on his first ad in California’s 48th District.

Hans Keirstead never mentions Rohrabacher by name in the ad.

But the neuroscientist and stem-cell researcher criticized House Republicans’ legislation, which Rohrabacher voted for, that repealed the 2010 health care law.

Keirstead contrasted it with his support for a “Medicare-for-all” single-payer health care system.

“Facts are my whole life,” Keirstead says in the ad. “Donald Trump’s agenda is dangerous and wrong.”

Keirstead contrasted it with his support for a “Medicare-for-all” single-payer health care system.

“Facts are my whole life,” Keirstead says in the ad. “Donald Trump’s agenda is dangerous and wrong.”

The fact Keirstead doesn’t mention Rohrabacher but does mention Trump’s is reflective of the fact that despite the fact Rohrabacher won the district by 16 points, it voted narrowly for Hillary Clinton instead of Donald Trump.

Kyle Quinn-Quesada, Keirstead’s campaign manager, said the campaign is buying on cable television from week-to-week to be flexible. The initial $152,000 price tag is for the first week.

California’s primary is on June 5th and the two candidates who receive the most votes will advance to the general election regardless of party affiliation.

Two Democrats in the race, Laura Oatman and Michael Kotick, dropped out and endorsed Keirstead’s main Democratic opponent Harley Rouda in the last month.

Last week, Rouda's campaign dropped that also supported single-payer health care and touted his endorsement from the California Nurses Association.

Unlike Keirstead's ad, Rouda compares Rohrabacher and Trump.

The ad aired districtwide on cable last week, the campaign spent $17,920 on it and this week spent an additional $17,920.

Both Rouda and Keirstead have used their own personal wealth to fund their campaigns in previous quarters.

In the most recent fundraising quarter, Keistead raised $194,362.23 and had $641,918.56 in cash on hand. But he lent $210,000 to his own campaign on March 31.

Similarly, Rouda reported raising $162,356.22 for the same fundraising quarter and having $1,101,875.30 in cash on hand. But Rouda also dug deep into his own pockets to fund his campaign this quarter, making one loan on February 23 for $237,000 and an additional loan worth $163,000 on March 31.

Conversely, Rohrabacher reported raising $352,039.05 and having $901,295.40 in cash on hand.

Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates California's 48th District as Tilt Republican.

Watch: Losing Ryan’s Fundraising Prowess Adds to GOP’s Midterm Woes

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