National Horizon, an Arizona-based Super PAC, has launched its second TV ad to assist Republican/Conservative US Senate hopeful Wendy Long in her long-shot bid to unseat Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.

The spot, according to National Horizon consultant Nelson Warfield, (who has extensive experience in New York, too), is airing on broadcast stations in Syracuse, Buffalo and Rochester with more markets to come.

The buy is $500,000. (The first ad was cable only).

This new ad hits Gillibrand for her support of the Affordable Care Act – specifically the piece of it that taxes medical devices.

Long has said Gillibrand’s “yes” vote on Obama care cost New York jobs. Recently, Long noted that Skaneateles Falls-based Welch Allyn cited the 2.3 percent tax as part of the reason behind its global restructuring program that would include cutting 10 percent of their workforce over the next three years.

This comes on the heels of Gillibrand releasing two ads of her own – one tailored for upstate that focuses on the economy, the other for the NYC market that focused on transparency and ethics – in her first public recognition that she’s actually in a race this year.

Long, who is largely an unknown entity compared to Gillibrand, has struggled to raise campaign cash and has reported debt in her last two FEC filings.

She has been insisting that fundraising is picking up. We’ll see if that’s true when her latest filing for the third quarter (which just ended) becomes public.

Gillibrand is sitting on some $10 million worth of campaign cash, and has been frantically raising more, sending out email appeals with regularity – at least one a week, if not more.

Were it not for outside expenditures like this one by National Horizon, Long would not be on the air at all.

It’s hard to say what this Super PAC’s motivation is, although it does have a New York connection through one of its donors, Long Island hedge fund magnate Robert Mercer.
Its first ad slammed Gillibrand for siding with President Obama in his battle with Catholic leaders over a contraception coverage mandate – not something that has been in the news lately.

This leads me to speculate that the real goal here is to bolster Long just enough that she isn’t a drag on down-ballot races, particularly the contested congressional conetsts and state Senate battles.