by Jonathan Singer, Tue Oct 10, 2006 at 07:38:02 AM EDT
As Jerome notes over in Breaking Blue, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has decided to invest close to $1 million in the Virginia Senate campaign on advertisements going after GOP Senator George Allen Junior.
The ad is, I think, successful on a number of levels. First, it gets out a lot of information about Allen's voting record, pointing out some of his more outrageous stances, such as those on the minimum wage and body armor. Yout the real success of the ad lies in the fact that it uses these issues as a cover to go after Allen for his racially insensitive language, most notably targeting the "macaca" comment.
In order for Jim Webb to win this year, it is assumed that he will need to trounce Allen in the less culturally conservative areas of the state, particularly in Northern Virginia. This ad goes a long way towards achieving this end by reminding these voters, many of whom are averse to the type of racially-charged politics that once played (and perhaps still does) in other areas of the South, that a vote for Senator Allen is a vote for someone who, at best, is prone to making statements clearly offensive to racial minorities and, at worst, is a racist himself.
It's not a perfect ad, but it does the job it intends to.
Update [2006-10-10 11:40:3 by Jonathan Singer]: And, as an aside, Michael Forsythe and Miles Weiss of Bloomberg news report, "Stock options that Senator George Allen described as worthless were worth as much as $1.1 million at one point, according to a review of Senate disclosure forms and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings."