Mary Herman, wife of independent U.S. Senate candidate Angus King, wrote in a fundraising email Wednesday that Republicans were trying to "buy the election."

The email, titled "Nothing Prepared Us for This," was sent to supporters just hours after two polls reported that King’s rivals had eroded the former governor’s once-commanding lead. Herman wrote that outside Republican groups had spent nearly $2 million to influence the race.

"When my husband decided to run for Senate, we knew the campaign would be hard at times, but nothing – not even the eight years when Angus served as Governor – could have prepared us for this," Herman wrote. "He reminds me that we cannot take these attacks personally, but the recent coordinated assault by outside Republican groups is making an assumption that ought to offend us all: They are literally trying to buy this election, and they couldn’t care less about Maine."

Herman also noted that while Republican Charlie Summers "claims he ‘wants to talk about the issues,’ " his out-of-state proxies are "trying to tear my husband down with lies and distortions." 

"We’ve never taken anything in this race for granted, and with nearly $2 million in attack advertising directed at Angus, we must all redouble our efforts to help him win this race," Herman wrote.