The National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) jumped into West Virginia's special Senate election Friday, releasing an ad slamming Gov. Joe Manchin (D) for supporting "Barack Obama's big-government agenda."

Recent polling has shown a much closer race than had been expected to fill out the term of the late Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), with Republican businessman John Raese in a dead heat with Manchin, according to the latest numbers from Public Policy.

The NRSC ad echoes the message the largely self-funding Raese has already been hitting Manchin with on the airwaves.

"Manchin supported Obama's stimulus plan that wasted $800 billion, increased debt and unemployment got worse," the ad's narrator says. "Manchin supported the government takeover of healthcare that cuts Medicare and raises costs."

The 30-second spot ends with a shot of Manchin and a smiling President Obama.

The NRSC's investment is a sizable one — according to a party source, the committee is spending $1.2 million total over the next two weeks on the buy, including spending in the D.C. market. It shows the national party is convinced the state is firmly in play this fall.