Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Ads: Georgia Senate Runoff--UPDATED

Since yesterday, when I saw it five or six times during regional football coverage, I've been trying to track down the latest ad from Saxby Chambliss. Essentially the ad is a remix of the ad "Martin Economics" that ran during the last week or so of the general election campaign (see below). The basic point? Obama's (...and by extension Martin's) tax plan(s) is (are) bad for Georgians. The new version ends with Chambliss promising to lower taxes.

But Chambliss is not alone here. In fact, the DSCC has been quite involved in this campaign over the final weeks of the general election campaign. But Martin, too, has an addition to the discussion as well.

The ad, "Recession," may as well be called, "In His Own Words." It opens, as you can see above, with Chambliss saying, "We may not be in a recession. I don't know what that term means." Yeah, that one is in the same vein as "Read My Lips" and "The Fundamentals of the Economy are Strong." And the intent is exactly the same: Paint your opponent as out of touch on the most salient issue of the 2008 campaign. 61% of voters polled ( the exit polls) called the economy the "most important issue" and 49% of those went for Martin compared to 47% for Chambliss. That's a pretty even division, and tells us why both are continuing to revisit the issue in ads. If anyone can claim any advantage on the issue before December 2, it could make the difference.

And for the record, the footage of Chambliss in that new Martin ad is from this cycle. Yeah, the topic is timely enough, but still. Those are current Chambliss signs in the background, though.

Oh, and here is the latest ad from the NRSC on behalf of Chambliss. There's some good imagery in this one. Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer make appearances at the end with Martin's "crazy" picture being blocked out by the words "Liberal Jim Martin" with Pelosi prominently displayed to the right. The "Out of Touch" charge on the economy is the issue of this runoff. Both candidates are saying the other is more out of touch on the economic situation.

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Long Island Democrat said...

Seems like both candidates want to make this in some part a referendum on Obama. They're repeating much of the McCain-Obama campaign (the parallels to the fundamentals ad that you mentioned are clear), and notice how at 0:23 in the Chambliss ad "OBAMA" is larger than then the rest of the text.

At first, the making this a referendum on Obama would seem to favor Chambliss — after all, McCain won Georgia, albeit by only five points. Martin has to hope that his differences with Obama are strong enough to make up that deficit.

Josh Putnam said...

It is definitely a referendum on Obama. The new ad from Chambliss -- why isn't it online yet -- features not only Obama's name in large font but has also added a picture of the president-elect.

Speaking of pictures, the NRSC has some interesting ones of Martin (slightly maniacal-looking) and Chuck Schumer (Why Chuck and not Harry Reid, I have no idea.) in a new ad for Chambliss.

I'll add it to the ones above. From an imagery standpoint it is a good one that falls back on the same tax arguments that have been used already.

Long Island Democrat said...

Chuck's from Brooklyn. Harry's from Nevada. If you're trying to portray your opponent as a "New York liberal" (and I don't know whether Saxby's used that phrase) you're probably better off using a guy from a state that has become synonymous with liberals in the minds of many than from a state that has gone Republican in many recent presidential elections.

Josh Putnam said...

I suspect you're right, Jack. I don't know what a Nevada liberal is, but I do know what a New York liberal is.

...and it isn't good. Not here in Georgia at least.