By Pat Loeb
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Four Democrats are running to replace Congresswoman Alyson Schwartz in Pennsylvania’s 13th district, including one unconventional candidate whose campaign is getting a boost from an unusual source.
You may have heard the disclaimer at the end of campaign ads for Val Arkoosh – “This message paid for by the American Society of Anesthesiologists PAC.”
It’s sort of a funny thing to hear at the end of a political ad, but it makes sense when you know the candidate, Arkoosh, is an anesthesiologist.
“We’re very committed to making sure Americans get high quality anesthesia care,” says Jeff Mueller, the PAC’s chair.
He says anesthesiologists are no different from any other group that wants its voice included in decisions.
The ASA has funded a number of candidates, both tea party Republicans and liberal Democrats.
In Arkoosh’s case, it’s helped put her in the lead for fundraising against better known candidates, State Senator Daylin Leach, former Congresswoman Marjorie Margolies and State Representative Brendan Boyle.
Each of the other candidates is, in turn, backed by an interest group. Leach has the support of the Pennsylvania State Education Association. Margolies, former first daughter Chelsea Clinton’s mother-in-law, is a Democratic Party favorite. Boyle is favored by the building trades.
Sarah Bryner at the Center for Responsive Politics says contributions are not a guarantee of influence, but, “It’s very important that people pay attention to the money behind the people who are trying to win your vote.”