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McDowell Tops Benishek in New Poll After MLCV Ad Campaign

Contact: Jeff Gohringer, 202-454-4573 or

September 20, 2012  

MICHIGAN – A new poll released today by the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) and the Michigan League of Conservation Voters (MLCV) found Gary McDowell leading Rep. Dan Benishek 44% to 42%. This follows an aggressive ad campaign by MLCV, which released two television ads targeting Benishek for his anti-clean water, anti-Great Lakes voting record and his cozy relationship with special interests like Big Oil polluters.

“The more voters hear about Benishek’s extreme anti-clean water voting record, the less they want him serving in Congress,” said Navin Nayak, National LCV Senior Vice President of Campaigns. 

“Michigan voters want Gary McDowell in Congress fighting for the Great Lakes, and not Dan Benishek, who has made a career out of protecting Big Oil and corporate polluters,” said Lisa Wozniak, Executive Director of the Michigan League of Conservation Voters.

The NRCC and the Benishek campaign have spent nearly $300,000 on this race, but it hasn’t helped his struggling campaign. In addition to falling behind McDowell, the poll also found that only 33% of voters approve of Benishek’s job performance, with 52% of voters saying it was time for someone new to represent them in Congress. The full poll can be found here.

Earlier this month, the Michigan League of Conservation Voters launched a $330,000 television ad campaign criticizing Benishek for his efforts to slash clean water standards protecting the Great Lakes and touting McDowell’s proven record of holding polluters accountable. As part of the ad campaign, two ads ran on broadcast and cable in the Traverse City and Marquette media markets. 

Last month, the League of Conservation Voters named Rep. Benishek to its Flat Earth Five program, a campaign to defeat five House incumbents who deny the scientific consensus on climate change. More information about the Flat Earth Five can be found online at


 Paid for by the League of Conservation Voters,, and the Michigan League of Conservation Voters,, and not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.


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