You can see the whole bevy of ads here through YouTube. From my vantage, they do a good job of explaining the tangible benefits of healthcare reform legislation in a compelling way, one that actually speaks to specifics and individuals. And considering that a whopping 81 percent of Nevadans do not believe that the healthcare plan put forward by Reid's top GOP challenger Sue Lowden (bartering for care) is a "realistic way to reduce medical costs," it's probably not a bad idea for Reid to hammer away on the issue.
From Chris Good over at The Atlantic comes a photo of a new billboard on I-94 between Minneapolis and St. Paul from Americans United for Change, AFSCME, Alliance for a Better Minnesota, and the Minnesota affiliates of AFL-CIO and SEIU:
I like the sentiment, as well as the fact that these liberal groups are taking assertive steps to try to apply pressure to Minnesota's Republican Governor Tim Pawlenty to seat the winner of the Senate election that happened more than six months ago (!). What's more, I do realize that this is aimed at least as much at elites -- the news media, both inside the Beltway and in the Twin Cities -- as it is at the folks actually driving on I-94.
That said, it seems to me that it would worthwhile to make the billboard a little more direct. There's nothing on the outdoor advertisement, save for the posted URL SeatOurSenator.com, indicating what the specific message intended to be imparted is. Yes, the message might get through to Minnesotans and politics watchers all around the country through news reports (and, yes, even blog post) on the billboard. But wouldn't it be worth it to be slightly more clear to the drivers seeing the billboard each day that what Pawlenty is doing is putting his national ambitions over the good of the state by blocking Al Franken from being seated? Then again, maybe it's clear enough to the people of Minnesota, who have been enduring this GOP obstructionism for half a year, what the ad is talking about without further information?
Americans are struggling. We all know that foreclosures are up. More Americans are losing their jobs. And everyone feels the constant anxiety caused by our current healthcare system.
But sometimes the scope and depth of our nation's suffering don't hit home until tragedy strikes us, a friend or loved one. And sometimes, if everything is still going well for us personally, the exhilaration of these final days before the election can lead us to forget all the reasons why this fight is so important.
To help all of us remember, Progressive Future has just launched a somber but beautiful ad that focuses on our nation's economic challenges.
What better way to win back Reagan Democrats (assuming they actually exist as a subset of the electorate that is in play this fall) than to use Ronald Reagan himself to make the clear and crisp argument that the country today is no better off than it was before George W. Bush became President. The message is strong, the imagery is compelling, and, at least to the extent that it uses a Republican President to speak to why we need to elect a Democratic President, it has the real opportunity to break out of the clutter of ads currently running. Great spot.
This is a great punch back, and this ad is a whole lot better than a lot of the ads we have seen as of late from the Obama campaign. But I'm with Josh Marshall -- as great as it is to see the Obama campaign hit back, and hit back hard, it's about time to see the campaign go on the offense and get the McCain campaign on its heels. As JMM put it, "You have start the fight. Let the other guy fight back."