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Minn. Ad Puts Target At Center Of Campaign Finance Controversy

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Minn. Ad Puts Target At Center Of Campaign Finance Controversy

Minn. Ad Puts Target At Center Of Campaign Finance Controversy

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MICHELE NORRIS, Host:

As NPR's Peter Overby reports, that discloser is causing Target problems.

PETER OVERBY: Unidentified Man: Now Emmer runs for governor, working to grow jobs, getting government out of the way. Tom Emmer, the fighter Minnesota needs.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV AD)

OVERBY: The consultant behind Minnesota Forward is Brian McClung. He says the group was made possible by the Supreme Court decision to allow corporate political spending. In a cell phone conversation, he said that companies weigh their priorities when they give money for Minnesota Forward's ads.

BRIAN MCCLUNG: Some decisions might upset some folks, but they have to make a decision, you know, overall on what they think is the right direction, you know, for their business and for the community that they're in.

OVERBY: Larry Norton, a former counsel to the Federal Election Commission, says American business seems to be in wait-and-see mode for now.

LARRY NORTON: On the other hand, I do think you're going to see a significant uptick in the coming months in election-related advertising funded by unions, funded by major trade associations and other business organizations.

OVERBY: And when that significant uptick comes, he says, there's going to be one question asked over and over.

NORTON: And that is, well, if we make this contribution to you, are you going to have to disclose that we gave it to you?

OVERBY: Peter Overby, NPR News, Washington.

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