GOP Senate candidate slams McCaskill over Clinton ties

The top Republican candidate running to face Sen. Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillThe Year Ahead: Tech braces for new scrutiny from Washington McCaskill: 'Too many embarrassing uncles' in the Senate FEC votes to allow lawmakers to use campaign funds for personal cybersecurity MORE (D-Mo.) in November's midterm elections attacked McCaskill over her support for former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRoger Stone fundraising off promise not to testify against Trump Rivaling chants of 'USA,' 'lock him up' greet Flynn after sentencing hearing The Hill's 12:30 Report — Flynn awaits sentencing | White House signals it wants to avoid shutdown MORE in a new digital ad released Monday. 

McCaskill, who is considered one of the most vulnerable Senate incumbents on the ballot this fall, was the first member of Congress to endorse Clinton's 2016 presidential bid. McCaskill became one of the former secretary of State's most vocal backers on the campaign trail.
 
ADVERTISEMENT
McCaskill has sought to distance herself from Clinton's more controversial comments. But the new ad from state Attorney General Josh Hawley looks to turn McCaskill's support for Clinton against her — in a state President TrumpDonald John TrumpREAD: Transcript of James Comey's interview with House Republicans Klobuchar on 2020: ‘I do think you want voices from the Midwest’ Israel boycott fight roils Democrats in year-end spending debate MORE won by more than 18 points on 2016. 
 
The new online spot, shared exclusively with The Hill ahead of its Monday release, is meant to hammer home McCaskill's ties to Clinton and amplify Clinton's attacks on Trump supporters. 
 
The ad blends video from Clinton's recent remarks made in India with video of McCaskill speaking about Clinton at the Democratic National Convention and news footage from her 2013 endorsement of Clinton. 
 
"In Claire McCaskill's America...Hillary is the president. Senator McCaskill led the Hillary coalition. And what does Hillary Clinton think about us?" the ad reads, pivoting to Clinton's remarks. 
 
"If you look at the map of the United States, there's all that red in the middle where Trump won," Clinton says in video of her recent remarks at a conference in India. 
 
"I won the places that are optimistic, diverse, dynamic, moving forward. And his whole campaign, ‘Make America Great Again,’ was looking backwards," she adds.
 
"You didn’t like black people getting rights, you don’t like women, you know, getting jobs. You don’t want, you know, to see that Indian-American succeeding more than you are. Whatever your problem is ... working for a woman now, you don't like it. Whatever the reason was, he stirred that up." 
 
The ad then ends with more text, telling voters, "This is what Claire McCaskill and her 'president' think of you."
 
McCaskill quickly rebuffed Clinton's India comments last week in an interview with The Washington Post, disavowing the idea that Missourians didn't have legitimate reasons to vote for Trump. 
 
“Those are kind of fighting words for me, because I’m partial to Missouri voters,” she said
 
“I think they were expressing their frustration with the status quo. I may not have agreed with their choice, but I certainly respect them. And I don’t think that’s the way you should talk about any voter, especially ones in my state.” 
 
Clinton still remains on the minds of many Republicans, including Trump, who fundraised for Hawley earlier this month. 
 
Polling has been mixed on the race, which is considered one of the country's top Senate battles. 
 
A Gravis poll released March 12 had McCaskill up 2 points over Hawley, while Hawley lead by 8 points in an Axios–Survey Monkey poll released the week before. 
 
In recent weeks, Democrats have sought to hit Hawley by tying him to scandal-plagued Republican Gov. Eric Greitens. Greitens has been indicted on a charge of felony invasion of privacy related to an affair, and also faces an investigation into his use of encrypted messaging apps.