The air wars over Iraq policy in Congress took on new intensity today — and a new tactical twist. According to this Washington Post item a new group called Freedom’s Watch with ties to the White House is launching a $15 million television ad campaign aimed at shoring up congressional support for the war.
According to the Post and critical anti-war groups, Minnesota’s Sen. Norm Coleman is one of the targets of the campaign, along with other Republicans seen at risk of shifting position on the war. A local buy could also put pressure on Reps. Jim Ramstad, Michele Bachmann and John Kline.
The Star Tribune has not been able to independently confirm that the ads will be running here. A Freedom’s Watch spokesman won’t comment on where the ads are running. According to a Freedom’s Watch press release the campaign will appear in more than 20 states and dozens of congressional districts.
What’s clear is that these ads strike a quite different pro-war chord than did an ad aired by Vets for Freedom in support of Coleman some weeks back. Instead a “thank you senator” message these ads feature disabled vets and spouses of those killed in action decrying the very idea that members of Congress would change their votes and turn against the war for political reasons.
We’ll see if the ads turn up here, and the Big Question will post any new information. The ads are below, and so is an anti-war spot launched today against Rep. Michele Bachmann. Its new twist is use of the State-of-the-Union smooch as a visual kicker to drive home Bachmann’s loyalty to Bush.
The Freedom’s Watch ads:
Here’s the Bachmann ad: