Harsh ad gives Begich re-election bid a hiccup


JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — An inflammatory ad is giving Sen. Mark Begich's (BAY'-gich) re-election bid an unexpected hiccup.

The Alaska Democrat has been running one of the most disciplined campaigns of the midterm elections, then his campaign aired an ad so over-the-top that he has been forced to pull it.

Republicans increasingly looked at Alaska as an out-of-reach goal and were considering shifting dollars reserved for Begich's race toward other at-risk incumbents, such as those in North Carolina or New Hampshire.

But after Begich ran an ad using a high-profile crime to cast Republican rival Dan Sullivan as soft on sex offenders, it left the Democrat's allies and advisers worried.

Democrats now are spending money there sooner than they had expected, and Republicans are taking another look at the prospect of ousting Begich.

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