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Bill Clinton vouches for Obama economic plan in new TV ad

August 23, 2012|By Michael A. Memoli
  • Former President Bill Clinton, as seen in the Obama campaign ad "Clear Choice."
Former President Bill Clinton, as seen in the Obama campaign ad "Clear… (Obama for America / Los Angeles…)

WASHINGTON -- Reprising his role as one of the campaign’s top surrogates, Bill Clinton testifies on behalf of President Obama’s capacity to boost employment in a new campaign ad launched Thursday.

The spot represents how the Obama campaign feels Clinton can best help the president’s reelection bid, using what they say is Clinton’s strong credibility on the economy to confront Republican attacks on the president’s job record.

In the ad, Clinton says that the Obama plan to grow the middle class mirrors “what happened when I was president.”

“This election to me is about which candidate is more likely to return us to full employment,” Clinton says in the 30-second spot. “The Republican plan is to cut more taxes on upper-income people and go back to deregulation. That’s what got us in trouble in the first place. President Obama has a plan to rebuild America from the ground up, investing in innovation, education and job training. It only works if there is a strong middle class.”

The Mitt Romney campaign has at times attempted to play Clinton off Obama, tacitly applauding the 42nd president’s record on the economy to argue that his Democratic successor has fallen short. Most recently, Republicans accused Obama of gutting the welfare reform law Clinton signed, a charge the Democratic campaign and fact-checkers have called a distortion.

Team Obama says that using Clinton as a weapon against Obama ultimately fails because, as the new ad shows, Clinton himself will be active in making the pro-Obama case.

Clinton was chosen for a key slot at the Democratic convention in Charlotte, N.C., with a prime-time speech Sept. 5 officially nominating Obama for a second term.

The ad, entitled “Clear Choice,” will air in television markets in New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, Ohio, Iowa, Colorado and Nevada.

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