Why are the presidential candidates spending so much time to raise so much money? To buy TV ads. Which ones succeed? Which fail? In Ad Watch, we review them as they come out. Today: Mitt Romney makes his first negative TV ad about Obama's "doing fine" comment, Obama says Romney grew the debt in Massachusetts, and a Republican group urges action on Iran.
The Ad: Mitt Romney, "Doing Fine?"
The Issues: Obama said the private sector is "doing fine" compared to the huge job losses in the public sector, which is true, but a dumb thing to say.
The Message: Obama is out of touch with regular Americans. A lot of people are out of work, and Obama said "the private sector is doing fine," which the ad repeats three times. "How can President Obama fix our economy if he doesn't understand it's broken?" the ad asks. The ad uses the same music as 2008 ad, aired by the Obama campaign, that attacked John McCain for saying "the fundamentals of our economy are strong," The Huffington Post's Jon Ward points out. And nearly the same tagline. The 2008 ad ended: "How can John McCain fix our economy if he doesn't understand it's broken?"
Who'll See It: Romney and the Republican National Committee have already tested out ads on the "doing fine" comment, and apparently they were pleased with the results. This ad is for TV, and it's Romney's first negative one of the general election.