Rep. Bruce BraleyBruce Lowell BraleyOPINION | Tax reform, not Trump-McConnell feuds, will make 2018 a win for GOP Ten years later, House Dems reunite and look forward Trump: Ernst wanted 'more seasoning' before entertaining VP offer MORE (D-Iowa) emphasized his commitment to hard work and family in his first ad of the Iowa Senate race.

The minute-long spot is narrated by both Braley and his mother, and recounts the odd jobs he had to take during high school to help support his family and help pay for college after his father was injured.

“My dad was severely injured working at a grain elevator here in Brooklyn. He was laid up for almost a year and things were grim for my family from a financial standpoint. It was the motivating factor in my mom deciding to go back to college and get her teaching degree,” Braley says in the ad.

After Braley outlines a series of jobs he took through junior high and high school — paperboy and a range of farm work — his mother declares, “I don’t remember him ever missing work. You know, he knew the value of a dollar and what hard work would do.”

Braley has been leading his GOP opponents in most polls, and Democrats have been confident the crowded Republican field will give him an edge in the race.

But he stumbled some last month after comments he made at a fundraiser deriding Sen. Chuck Grassley (R) as a “farmer from Iowa who never went to law school” went public. They played into the GOP narrative of Braley as an out-of-touch trial lawyer, and he’s since been working to reestablish his ties to the voters of the state — with the ad as another example of that effort.