Ad War Update: Doubling-Down On Bain And 47%

Andrew Sullivan —  Oct 25 2012 @ 6:49pm

Just a few new ads from the presidential campaigns today. Here the Obama campaign goes back to the 47% basics (buy size/scope unknown):

From the Romney campaign, which announced today that they raised a massive $112 million in just the first half of October, there comes this new Spanish-language spot (buy size/scope unknown):

Natalie Jennings translates:

[The ad says] "Most Americans believe we are heading in the wrong direction. Higher deficits, chronic unemployment, a president who admits he can’t work with Congress. Higher Deficits. Chronic Unemployment. Can’t Change Washington … [Obama] says he’s only had four years. With four years, Mitt Romney turned things around in Massachusetts … Leadership is finding the way to live up to your promises."

From the outside spenders, an AFL-CIO affiliated Super PAC is calling Romney an "economic traitor" in this brutal new ad that will air in three states ($1 million TV/web buy):

Alexander Burns' two cents:

It’s an acid charge to hurl against Romney, and represents perhaps the most provocative attempt to re-inject Bain into the campaign at the 11th hour. Romney has pointed out throughout the 2012 race that he has not made management decisions at Bain for a decade or more, and he’s more than a few steps removed from the Sensata outsourcing. If you had any illusions about Democrats’ determination to burn Romney to the ground, with whatever methods they have at their disposal, let this be your reality check.

On the lighter side, "Girls" creator Lena Dunham, appearing in a web video for the Obama campaign, drops a little innuendo in support of POTUS:

While the torrent of new ads has slowed for today, that definitely won't hold; a whopping one-third of the total cycle's ads will air in the next two weeks:

Because the field has narrowed [from 2008], [industry analyst Jack] Poor isn't sure TV stations will have enough [air time] inventory to handle the onslaught. There have been a number of reports that some stations are shaving an extra minute or two out of news, adding weekend newscasts or bumping some syndicated programming. For example, in Washington, the Fox station bumped The Simpsons during the week to lengthen its news. … Over the next 13 days, expect the two candidates to adjust ad schedules to squeeze out every possible vote. While President Obama has outgunned challenger Mitt Romney the first three weeks in October, that could change in an instant.

Click here for a map from the Wesleyan Media Project showing the differences between 2008 and 2012 ad targets. On the downticket, Rand Paul's PAC is out with a caustic ad supporting the besieged Indiana candidate Richard Mourdock by trying to change the subject with lots of scary foreign footage:

Meanwhile in Arizona senate race, Democrat Richard Carmona is making his closing argument with this positive new ad. But Carmona's GOP opponent Jeff Flake counters with a biting attack:

GOP dark-money group American Commitment is supporting Flake with a $1 million buy. One of their new ads attacks Carmona in an almost identical language as Flake's ad, while another spot touts Flake. On the House down-ticket, Sean Sullivan highlights the innovative, upbeat ads of Blue Dog Congressman John Barrow (D-GA), including this focus on fiscal conservatism:


Sullivan sums up the state of Barrow's race:

Barrow is an underdog against Republican Lee Anderson (we recently rated his race as the 10th most likely to flip party control). To win, the Democrat needs to attract support from both conservative white voters and liberal African-Americans voters. A recent ad in which Barrow says "Long before I was born, my grandfather used this little Smith & Wesson here to help stop a lynching," stood out because it appeared aimed at both. Barrow can’t alienate the left by slamming Obama constantly, nor can he afford to enrage the right by fully embracing the president. So he released an ad [link] earlier this year in which he identified areas where he agrees with the president, and issues over which he takes issue with the White House.

We have previously featured an ad from Democratic NC State Senate candidate Deb Butler in which she brandishes a transvaginal probe to hit her opponent Thom Goolsby's stance on women's health. Now a reader passes along a new ad from the Butler campaign in which a OB/GYN goes direct-to-camera hitting Goolsby again:

In miscellaneous news, some celebrities appear in a new series of PSA's trying to get out the vote – the first one stars Jessica Alba, Star Jones and And in the issues campaign, marriage equality advocates in Maryland are using a recording of Obama's statements in support of marriage equality in this radio ad:

John Wagner explains why:

The ad, produced by Marylanders for Marriage Equality, highlights the emphasis both sides have put on wooing African-American voters, who make up a larger share of the electorate in Maryland than in any state outside the Deep South. A Washington Post poll released last week showed 42 percent of African American voters support Question 6, while 53 percent oppose it. Among white voters, 56 percent favor the measure, and 39 percent oppose it.

There's a new pro-equality ad from Washington's United For Marriage as well.

Ad War archive here.