CUNA Makes Special Election Bid For Tea Party-Backed CU Director

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MANCHESTER, N.H. – In an unusual independent campaign initiative, CUNA is airing radio ads over the next few days for Senate candidate Ovide Lamontagne, chairman of the board of St. Mary’s Bank, the nation’s first credit union, who is running in Tuesday’s Republican primary.

CUNA is spending $65,931 in a pre-primary independent expenditure to produce radio ads and buy air time for Lamontagne, who is backed by the local Tea Party affiliates. The radio spots were produced by the Alexandria, Va., firm of Greener and Hook.

CUNA, which is barred under election law from coordinating such an independent expenditure with the candidate, said it is making the unusual expenditure for Lamontagne because of his strong credit union ties.

Lamontagne, the 1996 Republican nominee for Governor, is facing off Tuesday against New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte and millionaire businessman Bill Binnie, along with several other lesser candidates. The Republican nominee is expected to be running against Democratic Congressman Paul Hodes in the general election.

CUNA’s political action committee is one of the most active in Washington and will spend more than $4 million for the 2009-2010 elections.

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