The Democratic Party will go on the offensive Saturday with a new television commercial that accuses President Bush (search) of "favoring corporations that move their headquarters overseas" while praising nominee John Kerry's (search) plan to "export American products, not American jobs."
At the same time, the Bush-Cheney campaign, which is running positive ads on television, is rolling out a radio commercial criticizing Kerry on taxes and terrorism, claiming that the Democrat is "just like clockwork" on both issues.
The Democratic National Committee's (search) independent expenditure office, acting independently from Kerry's campaign, will spend another $6 million next week to run television ads in local media markets in 20 competitive states and on national cable networks.
The party spent the same amount this week when it made its foray into this year's presidential campaign ad wars, filling in for Kerry who stopped advertising until September to save money for the election homestretch.
The DNC's first ad — a positive spot that showed part of Kerry's acceptance speech at the nominating convention — will continue to run next week along with the new commercial. It says: "Millions of good jobs lost to plant closures and outsourcing. Yet President Bush protects tax breaks, favoring corporations that move their headquarters overseas."
The ad then claims: "America can do better" and argues that Kerry will "end tax-killing loopholes" and "provide incentives to companies who create good jobs here."
Steve Schmidt, a Bush-Cheney campaign spokesman, called the DNC ad "one more example" of the negativity of Democrats and claimed that the Kerry campaign, the DNC and "their third-party allies have run the most relentlessly negative and cynical campaign."
Kerry campaign spokesman Chad Clanton responded: "Bush is the one who is negative and cynical. He's satisfied with where we are."
Ellen Moran, who runs the DNC independent expenditure office, defended the ad, saying it is designed to highlight for voters the differences between the two candidates' economic policies. "This ad draws out what some of those distinctions are," she said.
Meanwhile, Bush's re-election campaign has bought about $850,000 worth of airtime to run its radio ad over a week.
The commercial accuses Kerry of talking tough on terrorism, while voting against funding for U.S. troops and proposing cuts in the intelligence budget after the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center. The ad also claims that for 20 years Kerry voted to raise taxes but now says he will cut taxes on the middle class.
It will air in 19 states where Bush's campaign is running TV ads, positive commercials that talk about the "optimistic" mood of the country under his administration — a shift from five months of TV ads mostly criticizing Kerry.
Clanton called the radio ad a "gross misrepresentation" of Kerry's record. "George Bush has no positive plan for the future so his only strategy is to mislead and attack," he said.