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Shelby may battle Washington D.C. PAC by sending $5 million to Britt-backing PAC

Sen. Richard Shelby plans to send $5 million to a super PAC that backs Katie Britt, according to The Washington Post.

Katie Boyd Britt speaks before the Business Council of Alabama.

Retiring U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby plans to counter Washington D.C. super PAC money flooding to U.S. Rep Mo Brooks’ campaign by giving $5 million to an Alabama super PAC that supports his former chief of staff, Katie Britt, according to The Washington Post. 

The newspaper in reporting that possible $5 million infusion for Britt’s campaign cited two people familiar with the conversation. 

The possible influx of cash comes as two recent polls, one by the Britt campaign and another by a Britt-supporting super PAC, put her ahead of Brooks. A third recent poll shows a close race, putting Britt five percentage points behind Brooks. 

The Alabama Conservatives Fund, which supports Britt, launched in October and spent six figures on the two commercials for Britt, which are running in the Birmingham, Huntsville and Montgomery markets.

The Alabama Conservatives Fund PAC’s executive director, Dalton Dismukes, when reached by APR on Thursday, said in a message that he couldn’t confirm or deny the PAC is the one referenced in The Washington Post article. 

“We’re glad that our ads supporting Katie Britt are being seen and look forward to continuing to show our fellow Alabamians why she is the best choice for anyone looking to support a conservative Republican for US Senate in May,” Dismukes said. 

The largest funders of the conservative Washington D.C. super PAC Club for Growth are billionaires Richard Uihlein, who co-founded the Uline shipping supply company, and Jeffrey Yaas, an options trader whose firm owns tens of billions worth of investments in China, Israel and the U.S., according to Forbes. Yaas also owns a sports-betting company based in Dublin. 

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Club for Growth told The Washington Post that the possibility of Shelby’s money means Brooks will need to raise significantly greater money himself. 

“We haven’t set a fixed budget, but we will spend what we need so he wins,” Club for Growth President David McIntosh told the newspaper. 

“Katie’s opponent is nowhere to be found on the campaign trail just like he’s been asleep on the job for decades,” said Sean Ross, spokesman for the Britt campaign. “He’s the Joe Biden of Alabama: 40 years running for office, six terms in Congress, and nothing to show for it but empty words.” 

“It is clear that Alabamians are ready for fresh blood, and that’s why he is so panicked. Three polls released this week show that he has already blown what he claimed was a 40-50 point lead,” Ross continued. “Katie is going to win in 2022, because Alabamians know that she’ll fight tirelessly every day to protect our Christian conservative values, secure our nation’s southern border, and preserve the American Dream for our children and our children’s children.”

Brooks told The Washington Post on Wednesday that he was not surprised that Shelby might send funds to Britt’s campaign, the newspaper reported. 

“I entered this race after factoring in that Richard Shelby would probably put millions in on Katie Britt’s behalf,” Brooks told the newspaper. “They are hand in glove.”

Eddie Burkhalter is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can email him at [email protected] or reach him via Twitter.

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