A prominent pro-Trump super PAC is launching another $1 million ad blitz in Arizona amid polls showing President TrumpDonald TrumpMark Walker to stay in North Carolina Senate race Judge lays out schedule for Eastman to speed up records processing for Jan. 6 panel Michael Avenatti cross-examines Stormy Daniels in his own fraud trial MORE trailing Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenCourt nixes offshore drilling leases auctioned by Biden administration Laquan McDonald's family pushes for federal charges against officer ahead of early release Biden speaks with Ukrainian president amid Russian threat MORE in the state.
The Committee to Defend the President will run two ads on cable news and local broadcasts as part of the buy. The group is also spending $100,000 for a digital outreach effort.
It is the group's second $1 million ad buy in as many months in Arizona, after it previously launched an ad in September asking, “Just how long do you think you'll be safe in Joe Biden’s America?”
The two new spots also look to promote a law-and-order message the GOP has hoped will cut into Democrats’ support amid national protests over systemic racism and police brutality.
While many demonstrations have remained peaceful, some have devolved into looting and clashes with law enforcement, which the pro-Trump ads have highlighted.
Republicans have repeatedly claimed that Democrats are soft on protesters, specifically name-checking antifa, the loosely organized anti-fascist movement, with the first ad criticizing Biden for saying antifa is an idea and not an organization.
“Ideas don’t smash windows. Ideas don’t wreck police cars. Ideas don’t burn car dealerships, loot minority-owned businesses, pull people from their cars, assault and murder law-abiding citizens or bring whole cities to their knees. The Antifa threat is real and must be stopped,” a narrator says in the 30-second ad. “If Joe Biden can’t see the danger, he can’t lead America.”
The second ad looks to directly link Biden to the violence, claiming that his backers supported a bail fund that released people who participated in looting.
“I’m up when the sun’s down, smashing windows and smashing faces,” says a narrator posing as a looter. “Thanks to Biden supporters, I’ll never spend a night in jail. Biden’s backers support a bail fund for menaces like me ... I owe Biden big for getting me back to what I do best.”
Fact-checkers have noted that while several Biden staffers contributed to the Minnesota Freedom Fund, few protesters were bailed out by the group between late May and early June, immediately after the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. The Washington Post noted that there were some instances of the group assisting individuals accused of serious crimes.
While polling suggests such arguments have done little to impact Biden’s polling lead, Republicans have repeatedly sought to highlight violence in cities in relation to the protests in the hopes of swaying suburban voters who may find the images disturbing.
But Biden has come out swinging against Republican claims against him regarding the demonstrations, rebuffing the GOP’s main argument that he wants to “defund the police” by maintaining he wants to increase funding for law enforcement.
The ad comes as polls show Biden consistently leading Trump in Arizona, a state that has not gone for a Democratic presidential candidate since 1996 but has increasingly become more competitive due to an influx of new residents from liberal states and a mushrooming Hispanic population.