AAN officials described the campaign in detail to POLITICO, outlining how the organization aims to drum up support for both immigration legislation and Republican budget proposals in the coming months.
The nonprofit group and an affiliated super PAC, the Congressional Leadership Fund, spent a combined $55 million on advocacy and electioneering in 2011 and 2012, officials said. With $44 million of that total coming from AAN – a number that hasn’t previously been shared – the group can expect to have substantial resources for its policy messaging going forward.
The immigration effort will begin this weekend with a six-figure television buy featuring former Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez urging voters to support fixing “a broken system.” It is branded as a message from the Hispanic Leadership Network, an arm of AAN that has spent several years reaching out to Hispanic voters from the right.
The campaign represents a political gamble, though one that could alter the current dynamic of immigration reform. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio has been the party’s most outspoken advocate for an immigration proposal, but it remains to be seen how receptive the larger conservative community will be to enacting a compromise law.