Coats Goes On the Air in Indiana

Posted April 13, 2010 at 4:38pm

Former Sen. Dan Coats (R-Ind.) will begin airing a television ad Wednesday that touts his conservative credentials ahead of the May 4 Senate primary.

“As a conservative Senator, I fought against higher taxes and big spending, and I stood up for life and the 2nd Amendment,” a casually dressed Coats says straight to camera.

Coats, who retired from the Senate a dozen years ago, goes on to say that he never thought he’d run for office again but that he and his wife “decided we had to stand up — to reduce spending, repeal health care, and create jobs for our kids, grandkids, and for Indiana.”

Coats spokesman Pete Seat told Roll Call that the ad will run through the primary on broadcast and cable stations. He said he didn’t know how much the campaign is spending to air the ad.

“He’s got a conservative record,” Seat said, noting that Coats received a 90 percent lifetime score from the American Conservative Union. “We’re just reminding folks what his record was and what he plans to do when he’s in the U.S. Senate.”

Coats is the first Senate candidate on the air in the GOP primary, where he is battling former Rep. John Hostettler and state Sen. Marlin Stutzman to win over conservative voters. Hostettler has criticized Coats’ votes nearly two decades ago for the Brady bill and a ban on certain semiautomatic assault-style weapons.

The Democratic nominee in the contest to succeed retiring Sen. Evan Bayh (D) is all but certain to be Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D).