Friday, March 27, 2009 | 8:38 a.m.
WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said today that a liberal group’s ad campaign to push moderate lawmakers in support of the president’s budget is “not helpful.”
The group Americans United for Change started running TV ads this week in 12 states that are home to some of the Senate’s moderate Democrats and Republicans who could provide key votes in the budget battle next week.
The ads tells viewers in North Dakota, home to the Senate Budget Committee chairman, Sen. Kent Conrad, and other states to call lawmakers “and tell them you support President Obama’s budget.”
With an expanded Democratic majority in Congress, Reid faces increasing challenges as he tries to keep the diverse senators on his side of the aisle in agreement. For example, Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana has launched a new alliance of 15 moderate Democratic senators.
Ads are running in Bayh’s state, as well as in Maine, Nebraska, Virginia, Alaska, Louisiana, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Arizona and New Hampshire.
“It’s very unwise and not helpful,” Reid told reporters this morning. “These groups should leave them alone. It’s not helpful to me. It’s not helpful to the Democratic caucus.”