The ad opens with shots of the invitation to the event, co-hosted by actress Scarlett Johansson and Vogue editor Anna Wintour. Both have been prominent donors for the president in the past. Subsequent shots of the invitation reveal other big-name attendees, including pop stars Beyonce Knowles and Sean Combs and fashion icons Marc Jacobs, Diane Von Furstenberg and Vera Wang.
"Watching the Obama campaign host a ritzy NYC fashion show while 12 million Americans remain out of work? Priceless," onscreen text concludes.
Republicans mocked the president for the ties to the fashion and entertainment industries.
“President Obama will need to sell a lot of scarves and makeup to try and cover up the three years of his failed economic policies,” said Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus in a statement. “While his campaign is trying to put 'chic' back in Chicago, 12 million Americans are out of work, struggling to get by because of Obama’s weak economic leadership.”
Sean Spicer, a spokesman for the RNC, also suggested that Obama's collaboration with the design houses could amount to illegal campaign contributions.
"This raises serious questions about whether corporate money, property and employees were improperly used in the design and production of these items without reimbursement," said Spicer in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.
But the Obama campaign has said that the designers all willingly volunteered their time to design items for the president's campaign, in compliance with election laws.