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Karl Rove-affiliated Crossroads groups say they hope to raise $120 million for 2012 elections

The announcement by American Crossroads and Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies is another sign that the 2012 election will be heavily influenced by new political organizations that can raise unlimited sums.

March 01, 2011|By Tom Hamburger, Washington Bureau

Reporting from Washington — An announcement Tuesday from the Crossroads groups, the nonprofit political organization that Karl Rove helped to found, provides yet another sign that the 2012 money chase has begun and that it will be heavily influenced by new political organizations that can raise unlimited sums.

Together, American Crossroads and Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies announced Tuesday that they hope to raise $120 million through the end of 2012. The estimate is just a guess, however; some GOP campaign finance experts speculate that the Rove-connected groups are more likely to raise $200 million to $300 million, as part of what will likely be the most expensive election ever.

As an incumbent, President Obama is likely to raise $1 billion. The Crossroads groups can help underwrite the campaign of GOP candidates, who must first battle one another in primaries for the party's nomination.

Democrats are also gearing up. A new organization, Majority PAC, is being formed by former aides to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and by veteran Democratic strategists Jim Jordan and Monica Dixon. It will be able to raise unlimited funds to help Democratic Senate candidates, but will disclose donors.

This new Democratic venture is modeled after Patriot Majority PAC, which worked effectively in Nevada and elsewhere in the 2010 election cycle, staving off steeper losses for Democrats in Senate elections like Reid's.

tom.hamburger@latimes.com

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