The National Republican Senatorial Committee’s first paid TV spot of the 2018 cycle will hit cable airwaves in Washington, D.C., Friday morning.
The committee’s kickoff ad targeting red-state Democrats carries the message Republicans have been blasting all week: that Democrats are “playing politics” with President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch.
The NRSC’s first target is Indiana Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly. The ad begins with a clip from 2016 of the senator saying, “When there’s a new president, and that president nominates someone, I’ll vote yes or no on that person as well.”
The narrator interjects, “But now? They’re playing politics, threatening to deny a vote to Judge Neil Gorsuch.”
But in the next scene, the senator parlaying that sentiment isn’t Donnelly.
Instead, the ad cuts to a clip of Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, from before Gorsuch was nominated, saying, “We’ll fight it tooth and nail, as long as we have to.”
The NRSC has made tying vulnerable Democratic senators to the party’s more progressive leaders part of its early messaging strategy.
“Senate Democrats are following Chuck Schumer, Elizabeth Warren and the rest of the far left over a cliff with their knee-jerk opposition to Judge Neil Gorsuch,” NRSC communications director Katie Martin said in a statement.
After Gorsuch’s nomination, Donnelly reaffirmed that he believes in holding a vote.
“As I have said, part of our job as senators includes considering, debating, and voting on judicial nominations, including to the Supreme Court. I will carefully review and consider the record and qualifications of Neil Gorsuch,” the first-term senator said in a statement.
The NRSC ad, which will debut Friday during MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” will run for a week.