Campaign ads

Campaign ads

Rep. Edwards ad says he resisted pressure from Obama, Pelosi

If Rep. Chet Edwards (D-Texas) is going to survive in his heavily Republican district this fall, he likely needs ads such as the one his campaign just released. 

The 30-second spot takes aim at his own party's leadership in Washington, opening with the words, "When President Obama and Nancy Pelosi pressured Chet Edwards, Chet stood up to them and voted 'no' against their trillion-dollar healthcare bill."

The ad notes the longtime congressman votes with "the conservative Chamber of Commerce 67 percent of the time," and touts the candidate's endorsement from the National Rifle Association's Political Victory Fund. 

"When Washington liberals wanted to take away our guns," the ad's narrator said. "Chet said no." 

It's another spot to add to the increasing number of centrist Democrats who are running away from their party in Washington ahead of November's midterms.

Last week, President Obama said he gets the fact that the message for some congressional Democrats this fall might not reflect the priorities of his administration, noting "that's how political races work."

Edwards's district is one that will serve as a pretty good indicator of just how large Republican gains will be this fall. 

Given the nature of the district — it's the most Republican district in the country that's represented by a Democrat — it's a top GOP target and like most Republican challengers across the country, Bill Flores is trying to tie Edwards to the Democratic leadership in Congress. 

The National Republican Congressional Committee has already run an IE ad against Edwards, taking a shot at his self-proclaimed independence by noting that he voted in favor of both the stimulus and financial bailout bills. 


W.Va. Gov. Manchin hits Raese in first ad

Gov. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is wasting no time going after his Republican opponent in the state's special election for Senate, taking aim at businessman John Raese with his campaign's first TV ad.

It's a no-frills 30-second spot with Manchin looking straight into the camera and hitting Raese for running a negative campaign.

"This campaign has just begun and John Raese is attacking me just like he attacked Senator Byrd," Manchin says in the ad. "Washington is filled with people like John Raese who tear other people down. No wonder we're in this mess."  

The popular governor was expected to have an easy road in the special election after Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) decided against challenging him. But Raese is largely self-funding his bid and has already spent heavily on TV ads. The latest Rasmussen poll in the race only gave Manchin a six-point lead.

Manchin and Raese are battling for the right serve out the remainder of the term of the late Sen. Robert Byrd (D). 


Democrat labels ex-Rep. Deal 'too corrupt, even for Congress'

Former Georgia Gov. Roy Barnes (D) unleashed a hard-hitting attack ad Tuesday against former Rep. Nathan Deal (R) in the state's race for governor.

Barnes is seizing on the recent flap over Deal's tax returns, which the Republican released last week amid pressure from his opponent. 

Deal resigned his House seat in March to focus on his campaign for governor, but the retirement also came after the Office of Congressional Ethics said he had improperly described income from his family's salvage business.  

The 30-second spot from Barnes charges that "secrets are hidden in the details" of Deal's returns. 

"That's why he resigned from Congress at midnight," the ad's narrator says. "Nathan Deal — too corrupt, even for Congress."

Deal narrowly won a runoff last month over Karen Handel for the right to take on Barnes. Deal received some prominent backing from two rumored Republican presidential hopefuls — former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.

(h/t: Atlanta Journal Constitution)

—Sean Miller contributed to this post.


Midterm ad spending could reach $3 billion

Spending on political and issue ads ahead of the 2010 midterm elections is already approaching $1 billion, and one analyst predicts it's on track to reach $3 billion by November.

Ad Age has an interview with CMAG's Evan Tracey, who tracks political ad spending. Tracey said $864 million has already been spent this cycle, some $50 million more than was spent at this point in the 2008 election cycle. 

"Historically, two-thirds of all election spending comes during the final 60 days, so we are on track to approach $3 billion in total spending on political and issue ads," Tracey told Ad Age

The spending binge is being aided by self-funded candidates like Meg Whitman (R) in California and Linda McMahon (R) in Connecticut, as well as the Supreme Court's recent decision in the Citizens United case, which lifted restrictions on corporate and union spending.


Moran distances self from Washington in new Kansas Senate ad

Rep. Jerry Moran's (R-Kan.) latest ad in the Kansas GOP Senate primary couldn't be more emblematic of the environment members of Congress face.

While Moran has been in Congress for seven terms, the ad emphasizes that he comes home on the weekend rather than taking part in "lavish dinners with friendly lobbyists." It also notes that he didn't vote for any bailouts, stimuli or Obama's healthcare plan.

The ad makes no mention of Moran's opponent, Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.), who is an appropriator.

About the only thing missing is Scott Brown's truck; Moran is driving a car along the dirt roads of Kansas.


Giannoulias defends family bank in first ad

Nobody can say Alexi Giannoulias's Senate campaign wasn't ready for his family's bank to go under.

The Illinois Democrat's campaign on Monday launched its first general election ad, and the candidate asserts he is "very proud" to have worked for Broadway Bank.

"It's helped thousands of people achieve the American dream -- people who couldn't go to the big banks," Giannoulias says of the bank, adding that, "when I left over four years ago, it was in good shape."

Giannoulias closes by saying: "If a business like my father's that he started 30 years ago can fail, it's happening everywhere. People want someone who's going to fight for them."


Air war begins in Rep. Mollohan's district

The GOP primary in Rep. Alan Mollohan's (D-W.Va.) district has hit the airwaves, with former state Del. David McKinley and businessman Mac Warner both launching ads.

McKinley's TV ad is a cable buy that focuses on his time as a small businessman and uses the slogan, "Had enough?"

Warner's radio ad, meanwhile, goes negative on McKinley, the national GOP favorite in the race. The ad hits McKinley for saying at a recent debate that he wouldn't read all legislation that he votes on.

Below are McKinley's ad and the script for Warner's.

Warner radio ad

Warner: I’m Mac Warner, and I approved this message.

Announcer: David McKinley wants to serve in Congress. But at a recent debate, McKinley was asked if he would promise to read bills before voting on them. His answer? No! The Wheeling newspaper reported that McKinley said you can’t always read the bills, and you have to, quote, trust your friends. Isn’t that what got us into this health care mess?

Warner: I’m Mac Warner. When I’m in Congress, I will never vote on a bill I haven’t read. That’s what you deserve, and that’s my pledge to you.

Announcer: Paid for by Mac Warner for Congress.


Rep. Flake defends McCain, hits former colleague Hayworth on spending

Rep. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) goes to bat for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and goes after McCain's primary opponent, former Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R-Ariz.), in a new 60-second radio ad.

In the ad, Flake says McCain deserves the "lion's share" of credit for putting Congress on the brink of banning earmarks. He also says Hayworth (whom Flake doesn't refer to by name, but rather as McCain's "opponent") lost his way on the issue when he was in Congress.

In a direct shot at Hayworth, Flake also suggests that the former congressman lost reelection in 2006 because of that issue.

"Republicans including Sen. McCain's opponent lost their bearings on spending," Flake says. "They loaded up bills with pork barrel projects, and the voters punished Republicans by putting Democrats in charge."

It's a notable attack, given that Flake and Hayworth were colleagues.