Chambliss got help from Focus on the Family, as well as Musgrave

Rep. Marilyn Musgrave has generated plenty of attention for finally conceding — at least in a robocall to Georgia voters — that she lost her reelection bid to Democrat Betsy Markey in Colorado. But Musgrave is not the only Coloradan who lent a helping hand in efforts to reelect U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss in this week’s special run-off election in Georgia. Colorado Springs-based Focus on the Family also donated a reported $35,310 worth of radio ads boosting Chambliss.

The Focus-sponsored ads ran in about a dozen Georgia markets and were produced in the weeks after the Colorado Springs ministry and media empire laid off 202 employees — some 20 percent of its workforce — due to the economic downturn.

Also this election year, Focus pumped more than a half-million in cash into the effort to pass Proposition 8 in California to outlaw marriage between gay couples. The hefty contribution, coming amid employee layoffs, has drawn criticism.

After beating Jim Martin in Tuesday’s run-off election, Chambliss said Republican volunteers from 43 states came to Georgia to assist his runoff bid, The Atlantic Journal-Constitution reported.

“You’re the reason this happened,” the 65-year-old Moultrie lawmaker was quoted, telling cheering supporters. “Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.”

In all, outside groups spent more than $3.4 million in Georgia on the race since Nov. 4, the newspaper reported.

Martin benefited from the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws (NARAL), the League of Conservation Voters and labor unions. In addition to Focus on the Family, Chambliss got help from the Susan B. Anthony List, cotton growers and the National Rifle Association (NRA).

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Cara Degette

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