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Borrowing a page from the movie marketers’ playbook, the Democratic National Committee on Monday released a 30-second TV spot—a “trailer-style” video titled “Mitt v. Mitt”—that blasts the Republicans’ presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney for being a politician who is “willing to say anything.”
According to the DNC, the TV ad is, in fact, a trailer for a longer video treatment available on the committee’s new website, MittvMitt.com, which highlights the former Massachusetts governor’s current contradiction of his former positions on a range of issues involving the economy, immigration, a woman’s right to choose and workers’ rights,. (The longer “treatment” includes sound bites from Jay Leno, Conan O’Brien and Ronald Reagan.)
The anti-Romney videos underscore two important things about the Obama campaign: It clearly views the former Massachusetts governor as the president’s chief foe, and the campaign is unafraid to use Hollywood-style promotional tactics (along with entertainment industry money) to fight him.
The video seems likely to get an additional bounce from its timing, since much of the mainstream news media’s current coverage of Romney is focusing on how he’s attacking his surging rival Newt Gingrich for taking a position on undocumented immigrants that the former Massachusetts governor once advocated himself.
The “trailer”—whose script was released by the DNC—begins with the sort of voice over familiar to theater goers:
VO: From the creator of “I’m running for office for Pete’s sake”
CHYRON: From the creator of “I’m running for office for Pete’s sake”
CHYRON: Lawn work at Romney’s home still done by illegal immigrants, Boston Globe, 12/04/07
VO: …comes the story of two men trapped in one body.
VO: Mitt versus Mitt
CHYRON: Mitt vs. Mitt MITT ROMNEY: I will preserve and protect a woman’s right to choose.
CHYRON: Pro-choice, MittvMitt.com
ROMNEY: The right next step… is to see Roe Vs. Wade overturned.
CHYRON: Anti-choice, MittvMitt.com
VO: Two Mitts willing to say anything.
CHYRON: MittvMitt.com, Willing to say anything
ROMNEY: We put together an exchange, and the President’s copying that idea. I’m glad to hear that.
CHYRON: Pro-health reform, MittvMitt.com
ROMNEY: Obamacare is bad news.
CHYRON: Anti-health reform, MittvMitt.com
VO: See it all at MittvMitt.com CHYRON: See it all at MittvMitt.com [DNC Disclaimer]
The ad currently is running in Albuquerque, NM; Raleigh-Durham, NC; Columbus, OH;?Pittsburgh, PA; Washington, DC; and, Milwaukee, WI on a mix of broadcast and cable.
The strategy at work, according to the DNC, is that “Democrats don’t need any dirty tricks to prove Mitt Romney has no core convictions and no new ideas for creating jobs. We need only to let him speak for himself.” The trailer style has a proven record of drawing crowds into theaters. Now the Democrats are hoping they can use it attract voters to their polling places.
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