NAR’s 2014 election bets pay off

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The National Association of Realtors made some smart bets in the 2014 midterm elections, backing the winner in 11 of the 13 races that it pulled out the stops for, and helping Republicans regain control of the Senate and increase their majority in the House. According to records compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, NAR made more than $10 million in independent expenditures during this election cycle, placing six-figure bets on eight House candidates and five Senate hopefuls including soon-to-be Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell. That's up from $3.6 million in independent expenditures in the 2012 election cycle, when seven out of eight candidates who received big backing from NAR were re-elected. This time around, of the nine Republicans who got major support from NAR, eight were winners, as were three of the four Democrats. One reason NAR is so successful is that the trade association almost always backs incumbents -- particularly those who hold positions on...