Voters in South Carolina may see a new spot from "Americans for a Conservative Direction," promoting Senator Lindsey Graham as an anti-Obamacare, anti-spending Republican. The voters probably won't realize that the ad is actually from a subsidiary of Mark Zuckerberg's new pro-immigration group.
Here's the ad, which doesn't mention immigration at all.
What it does do is make a conservative case for Graham, credentials which his support of immigration reform might undermine. As reported by Politico, Americans for a Conservative Direction has been set up by Zuckerberg's FWD.us to provide precisely that sort of political air cover. If Graham is worried about losing support from his base for taking a pro-reform position — as he did in 2007 — Americans for a Conservative Direction is there to assuage those concerns.
The group is doing the same thing to help Senator Marco Rubio in Florida, albeit more directly.
This probably isn't what most people expected from Zuckerberg's group when it was first announced earlier this month. While Zuckerberg's political orientation has been subject to debate for some time, particularly after he hosted a fundraiser for Chris Christie in February, he's generally seen as a moderate — hardly the sort to be backing anti-Obamacare ads for a leader in the Republican senatorial caucus. But Zuckerberg recognizes the business value in a particular component of immigration reform — namely, more H-1B visas for the sorts of high-skilled workers the Silicon Valley depends upon — yielding political activism that is distinctly purple in hue.