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Screengrab of ad, courtesy of Judicial Crisis Network.

The Judicial Crisis Network is launching a $2.2 million ad campaign to put pressure on vulnerable Senate Republicans in battleground states to support a quick confirmation when President Trump announces his Supreme Court nominee.

The big picture: "Follow Precedent," previewed by Axios, is one of the first national and cable television ads to run following Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg's death Friday.

  • Several organizations on both sides of the aisle will spend millions to try to influence lawmakers in the fight to fill Ginsberg's seat and energize socially-driven voters ahead of November.

Details: The narrator of the ad depicts Democrats as extremists for calling on President Trump and the Republican-led Senate to wait until after the election to fill the vacancy and argues there is precedent to move quickly: "Justice Ginsburg was confirmed in 42 days. Only three Senators voted against her. Justice O'Connor was confirmed in 33 days. It was unanimous."

  • The ad will run in Colorado, Iowa, North Carolina, Utah and Maine targeting vulnerable GOP incumbent Sens. Susan Collins, Cory Gardner and Thom Tillis.
  • It also will air in Washington, D.C., reaching Trump and his aides ahead of his announcement of a nominee.

The backdrop: The Judicial Crisis Network — a conservative dark money group run by Carrie Severino, a former law clerk for Justice Clarence Thomas — has committed to spending at least $10 million this month on its Supreme Court mobilization efforts.

  • It was heavily invested in getting Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh on the bench.
  • Severino committed this weekend to "surpassing" the spending of progressive opponents. Demand Justice, a liberal dark money group, also committed to spending $10 million in the fight over Ginsburg's seat.

What they're saying: "There is no reason Judge Amy Coney Barrett or Judge Barbara Lagoa could not be confirmed before the election," Severino said in a statement to Axios, naming two women believed to be among Trump's leading contenders. "The Senate should ignore the extremists, stick to precedent and confirm the nominee.”

Watch the ad.

Go deeper

Supreme Court rejects second GOP effort to cut absentee ballot deadline in N.C.

Photo: Robert Alexander/Getty Images

The Supreme Court, for the second time in two days, rejected a GOP request to shorten the deadline mail-in ballots must be received by North Carolina officials to be counted.

The state of play: The state's deadline had been extended from 3 days to 9 days post-Election Day.

Oct 30, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Technical glitch in Facebook's ad tools creates political firestorm

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo: SOPA Images / Contributor

Facebook said late Thursday that a mix of "technical problems" and confusion among advertisers around its new political ad ban rules caused issues affecting ad campaigns of both parties.

Why it matters: A report out Thursday morning suggested the ad tools were causing campaign ads, even those that adhered to Facebook's new rules, to be paused. Very quickly, political campaigners began asserting the tech giant was enforcing policies in a way that was biased against their campaigns.

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Ipsos poll: COVID trick-or-treat

Data: Axios/Ipsos poll; Note ±3.3% margin of error for the total sample size; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

About half of Americans are worried that trick-or-treating will spread coronavirus in their communities, according to this week's installment of the Axios/Ipsos Coronavirus Index.

Why it matters: This may seem like more evidence that the pandemic is curbing our nation's cherished pastimes. But a closer look reveals something more nuanced about Americans' increased acceptance for risk around activities in which they want to participate.