The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee will begin running ads Monday in Indiana on behalf of newly minted candidate Evan Bayh, a move that reflects the Democrats’ optimism that they can capture what they once considered a solidly red seat .
A committee spokeswoman confirmed the ad buy Friday, but did not discuss how much money would be spent.
Bayh, a former senator who unexpectedly entered the race two weeks ago, has $9 million in the bank and is already running television ads of his own.
The move by the DSCC could reflect an attempt to knock his Republican rival, Rep. Todd Young, out of the race early or to force the GOP to begin spending money in Indiana this summer. After Bayh’s entry, The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report/Roll Call shifted the race rating from Republican Favored to Tilts Democrat .
Bayh served in the Senate from 1999 to 2011 and as governor and secretary of state of Indiana before that. Despite encouragement from President Barack Obama , he dropped out of his 2010 re-election bid lamenting the hyper-partisanship of Congress and the campaign finance system.