A Missouri state chapter of the conservative group America Rising Squared went up with a new television ad Wednesday targeting Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill (Mo.) for being "out-of-touch" with her constituents.
The 30-second ad from Missouri Rising, titled "Washington," is part of a seven-figure buy this month highlighting how McCaskill has grown increasingly out-of-touch with Missouri during her 30 years in politics. Not only does she own a $2.7 million condo in Washington, D.C., but she and her husband also own a private plane that she used between campaign stops during a "RV tour" of the state in late May.
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"Washington politician Claire McCaskill. After 30 years in political office, McCaskill’s a multi-millionaire. So out of touch, McCaskill billed taxpayers nearly $76 grand for private flights, jet setting between her Missouri mansion and her multi-million dollar D.C. condo," the ad narrator said. "Now, McCaskill is misleading us, claiming to be on a RV tour but using a private plane between stops."
"Dishonest. Out-of-touch. McCaskill is out for herself, not us," the ad narrator concluded.
The Washington Free Beacon reported last month that McCaskill's private plane, valued on her financial disclosure forms at more than $1 million, was flying to the same cities as McCaskill's campaign stops during the RV tour. While she attempted to take steps to hide the use of her plane in 2017 by requesting the Federal Aviation Administration prevent radar tracking information from being publicly available, she was not able to hide her flight patterns from websites such as ADS-B Exchange. Such websites uses a different type of data transmission to make tracking information publicly available.
Missouri Rising Action's executive director said in a statement it is "time to finally retire" McCaskill to her "home in Washington."
"During her 30 years in political office, Claire McCaskill has grown increasingly out-of-touch with Missouri — whether it’s her multi-millionaire lifestyle, her fake RV tour by private jet, buying a $2.7 million condo in DC, or voting in lockstep with Washington liberals like Chuck Schumer," said Brian Rogers. "It’s time to finally retire Senator McCaskill back to her home in Washington and elect a senator who represents the interests and values of Missouri – Attorney General Josh Hawley."
Following the publication of the Free Beacon report, McCaskill confirmed to Politico that she used her private plane while on the RV tour, but that she was on the RV so much that the "broken door drove me crazy."
"Anybody could have followed me," McCaskill said. "They could have seen when I got off the RV and when I went and got on the airplane."
The optics of the private plane helped McCaskill's predicted Republican opponent Josh Hawley, a top 2018 Republican recruit and the current Missouri attorney general, use the issue as a wedge between the senator and blue-collar Missourians who enthusiastically helped President Donald Trump win the 2016 presidential election. Hawley, who is widely predicted to win the Republican nomination in the Aug. 7 primary, said in a recent interview that McCaskill is "pretending to be one of the people and then living completely differently."
McCaskill responded by saying Hawley's messaging "bugs the hell out of" her and that it's "total bullshit."
"My husband has done exactly what you’re supposed to do in this country. He’s worked really hard, he’s created thousands of jobs and in the process, great wealth," McCaskill said of her real estate developer spouse. "I married a wealthy guy! And that somehow transforms me into a different person? It’s total bullshit."