Democrats have been pushing the fact that U.S. Rep. Roy Blunt, R-Springfield, has taken more money from lobbyists than another candidate running for office this election cycle.
That's according to an article from USA Today, which features a chart showing Blunt's U.S. Senate campaign has scooped up $310,534 from lobbyists. In an e-mail to reporters, Missouri Democratic Party spokesman Ryan Hobart pointed out that the figure is more than Republican National Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee.
But the top committee that received funds from lobbyists on USA Today's list is the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. That committee - which has taken $731,800 from lobbyists - exists to help out Democratic candidates running for the U.S. Senate. The group's Republican counterpart has raised $408,500 from lobbyists, according to the article.
The question has to be asked: if the DSCC spends, say, $400,000 to help Secretary of State Robin Carnahan, wouldn't it stand to reason that the Democratic statewide official would benefit? That's especially the case if that money is used to fund ads attacking Blunt's congressional record. Conversely, Blunt would almost certainly benefit if the National Republican Senatorial Committee spends money to attack Carnahan.
The point is that lobbyist money - whether raised through candidate committees or through outside groups - will be flowing heavily in the race to replace U.S. Sen. Kit Bond, R-Missouri. That's one of the realities of running in a high-profile and tightly-contested race for an open U.S. Senate seat.
ADDENDUM: I asked Hobart about this issue and he sent me this response:
"The DSCC helps all Democratic Senate candidates, as does the NRSC and similar Republican groups. The real distinction here is that Congressman Blunt has raised over 300,000 dollars in lobbyist money this year for his personal campaign - more than any other candidate. He has even raised more lobbyist money than the Republican National Committee and the National Repubilcan Congressional Committee. It really shows that he is the quintessential Washington insider."