A group with ties to GOP strategist Karl Rove is set to launch the first major advertising effort of the presidential season in North Carolina on Monday with a TV commercial that questions the economic record of Democratic President Barack Obama.
North Carolina is one of 10 key battleground states where Crossroads GPS plans to run two-weeks of television advertising that seeks to frame the debate on jobs, the economy and deficits.
The ad campaign comes 17 months before the November 2012 election. It underscores the critical nature of the Tar Heel state, which has historically gone Republican, but which Obama narrowly carried in 2008.
Sponsors of the ad would not say how much they were spending in North Carolina, but Jonathan Collegio, a spokesman for the group called it substantial.
They said it was part of a $5 million buy that included advertising in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada and Virginia as well as North Carolina.
GPS said it was the first phase of what it called a massive advertising blitz in which it planned to spend $20 million to criticize the Obama record.
President Obama may have inherited a recession, but his policies have made things worse for everyday Americans by running up the debt and causing economic uncertainty, said Steven Law, president of Crossroads. Now Obama seems checked out of efforts to reduce America's dangerous debt load, while his party is pushing massive tax increases and even more spending.
The ad, which is called Shovel Ready, begins with video footage of Obama saying the economy is growing at a good clip.
An announcer than says that unemployment up 25 percent. the national debt up 35 percent. The price of gas up 104 percent.
Rove, who was President George W. Bush's chief political strategist, was a co-founder of Crossroads.
This is the second TV ad of the presidential campaign. The state GOP ran a TV ad in the Triangle market criticizing Obama before his visit here on June 13th.