By: Maggie Haberman
August 16, 2012 05:06 AM EDT
The super PAC created by one of the Republican Party’s most prominent donors to move candidates toward backing gay marriage is about to invest in its first three House races, POLITICO has learned.
American Unity PAC, launched by Elliott Associates hedge fund executive Paul Singer earlier this summer with a $1 million donation, is poised to advertise in the races being fought by Reps. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.), Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.) and Judy Biggert (R-Ill.). While none of the three candidates has stated a clear position on gay marriage — only one GOP House member supports it — the group hopes to move the people it backs toward support of it.
A source familiar with the effort said that the group’s aim is to ensure “a counterbalance on the right,” adding that for “the long-term success of the [Republican] party, it must be able to reach gay and lesbian Americans and “the millions of Americans who are related to them.”
The PAC initially decided to enter these three races, the source said, because the incumbents are rank-and-file Republicans with a mixture of economic and tax records the group considers strong, but who also have been solid on specific gay rights issues.
The goal is for the group to spend money to benefit three to seven candidates overall, and this is the initial round. Super PAC support traditionally takes the form of ads.