Looking to avoid having swing voters lump her in with her party's fringe elements as she seeks re-election, U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., has launched a new campaign ad that declares she's "not one of those crazy Democrats."
The radio spot for McCaskill has run for the past week and features two middle-aged men chatting about the race between McCaskill and her Republican challenger, State Attorney General Josh Hawley, the Washington Free Beacon reported.
"Claire's not one of those crazy Democrats. She works right in the middle and finds compromise," one man says.
"I don't always agree with Claire McCaskill. But she works hard, fighting against those tariffs, doing all those town halls," the other man responds. "Claire's not afraid to stand up against her own party."
The men take shots at Hawley for being a "man in a hurry" and spending too much time at the gym during work hours.
Throughout the campaign, McCaskill has tried to cast herself as a bipartisan dealmaker in a state President Trump won by almost 19 points in the 2016 presidential election, according to the Washington Times.
McCaskill has said both political parties were responsible for the deep political division that currently exists.
“We’ve got to turn down the temperature,” she said.
Recent polls show McCaskill and Hawley neck and neck with two weeks to go before the midterm elections.
In a debate Thursday, she called herself a moderate who could find common ground with Trump.
“Clearly we can work together on some things,” she said.
Both candidates leveled harsh attacks at one another.
Hawley called McCaskill a liberal Democrat several times in an effort to convey she is out of step with voters, Politico reported. McCaskill responded by accusing her opponent of making up attacks and trying to fast-track his political career only two years into his first term as state attorney general.
But McCaskill's ad has rubbed some in her party the wrong way. State Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal said talk of "crazy Democrats" might be referring to the party's urban base, mostly composed of African Americans.
"[McCaskill] is calling her base in the urban areas crazy Democrats," Chappelle-Nadal said. "And she's relying on those so-called crazy Democrats to make sure she wins."
In another campaign ad controversy, Kansas Republican Sen. Pat Roberts asked McCaskill's campaign to remove a positive comment attributed to him from a 30-second ad that quotes him saying "If you want to pick somebody to work in a bipartisan manner … and get something done – you ask Claire McCaskill.”
Roberts asked that the quote be removed because her "days of bipartisanship are long over."