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Supreme Court pick to be backed by $10m campaign

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Immediately following Donald Trump's Supreme Court announcement tonight, a well-funded network will air its first ads pressuring vulnerable Democratic Senators who are up for re-election in 2018 into voting for the President's nominee.

Conservative operative Greg Mueller tells us the Judicial Crisis Network will launch phase one of its $10 million effort and the ads will be seen "within two minutes of the announcement." (And remember the announcement at 8pm tonight will be on prime-time television and carried by the broadcast networks.)

The first round of ads will focus on Missouri, Indiana, North Dakota, Montana and D.C.

Top targets:

  1. Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri (a state Trump won by 19)
  2. Senator Joe Donnelly of Indiana (a state Trump won by 19)
  3. Senator Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota (a state Trump won by 36)
  4. Senator Jon Tester of Montana (a state Trump won by 20)

Why it matters: Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell doesn't want to turn to the so called "nuclear-option to change Senate rules and ram through a court pixk with with 51 votes instead of 60. So to get to 60, McConnell needs to swing eight Democrats, and he'll be relying on well-funded outside groups to help.