Minter, Leahy launch general election ads

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 1:15 p.m.

MONTPELIER — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Sue Minter is on the airwaves with her first general election television ad, while Democratic U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy has launched his first two television ads of the Senate campaign.

Sue Minter

Sue Minter

Minter, a former secretary of the Agency of Transportation, launched an ad Tuesday that looks to highlight her management skills. It focuses on her work helping the state recover from Tropical Storm Irene and and serving on President Barack Obama’s Climate Preparedness and Resilience Task Force.

A narrator lays out what Minter’s goals as governor will be.

“As Governor, Sue Minter will make sure our children can stay and succeed here in Vermont with affordable education and livable wage jobs, a governor who will put Vermont families first,” the narrator says.

Filings with the Federal Communications Commission show that Minter plans to spend $35,420 through Sept. 19 with the state’s local network affiliates. The largest purchase is with CBS affiliate WCAX for $17,140. WPTZ, the local NBC affiliate, received a $11,090 purchase. WFFF and WVNY, the local ABC and Fox affiliates, received $2,860 and $4,330, respectively.

Those purchases do not include cable channels.

Minter’s rival, Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Scott, has yet to launch his own general election ads since winning the GOP primary on Aug. 9. Both Minter and Scott spent heavily during the primary campaign to help them secure the nominations, and both had depleted campaign accounts as the general election kicked off.

Both are benefitting from super PACs, however. The Republican Governors Association has spent heavily on behalf of Scott for — so far — four television commercials. The first began airing the day after the primary. FCC records show that the RGA’s super PAC, A Stronger Vermont, plans to continue spending in the coming weeks.

The DGA’s super PAC, Our Vermont, began airing an ad supporting Minter last week. It has also filed reports with the FCC showing that it will continue to spend on her behalf.

Meanwhile, Leahy, currently the longest-serving member in the U.S. Senate, also began airing ads Tuesday. One highlights his efforts to help the state recover from Tropical Storm Irene. A narrator describes Leahy as “a senator you’ve come to count on has your back.”

Sen. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Sen. Patrick Leahy (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

“Washington dragged its feet, but Pat Leahy wasn’t about to leave Vermont stranded. He pushed hard. Emergency funding passed the Senate and Vermont got the help it needed,” the narrator says about Leahy’s efforts to secure federal funding for the state after the 2011 storm. “Vermonters found the strength to face the future with confidence knowing their senator has their back.”

The second features Leahy and his wife Marcelle touting the “Farm to School” program he helped launch in 2010. In the ad the senator and his wife join school children in a cafeteria.

Campaign spokesman Jay Tilton declined to comment to the Vermont Press Bureau on how much the Leahy campaign is spending. FCC records indicate the campaign is spending at least $31,245.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has also reserved air time on behalf of Leahy. Tilton said Tuesday he was “not aware” of the DSCC’s plans.

Leahy is facing off against Republican Scott Milne, who formally launched his campaign on Saturday. Milne nearly toppled Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin in the 2014 gubernatorial race, forcing the Legislature to re-elect Shumlin after he won a narrow plurality of the vote.

neal.goswami@timesargus.com

Watch Minter’s ad below:

Watch Leahy’s ads below:

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