Clay releases first radio ad in congressional bid
U.S. Rep. Lacy Clay released a radio ad this week linking himself with President Barack Obama, a move marking the St. Louis Democrat’s first paid advertisement in his battle with U.S. Rep. Russ Carnahan.
The radio spot features the Revs. Freddie Clark and Ronald Bobo endorsing Clay’s bid for the Democratic nomination in the 1st congressional district. Clay and Carnahan are seeking the Democratic nomination in the district that encompasses all the city of St. Louis and areas of St. Louis County.
Included in the pitch is an assertion that "this year, we need to stand behind leaders who stand up for us – leaders like Lacy Clay and President Obama.”
“In the general election, we will stand with President Obama. But in the August 7th Democratic primary, Lacy Clay needs our support,” said the two religious leaders, who are both reverends at predominantly African-American churches in St. Louis. “Lacy Clay has been a Democrat with backbone, standing up against bad George Bush policies like the war in Iraq and standing up to protect our jobs.”
Clay and Carnahan both endorsed Obama’s presidential bid fairly early in the 2008 election cycle, a period of time when the party was split between the then-Illinois senator, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton and to some extent former U.S. Sen. John Edwards.
The “Democrat with backbone” line conforms to an ongoing theme that emphasizes Clay's left-of-center voting record. His campaign recently released a web video showcasing how his ranking by the National Journal as more liberal than Carnahan. That could be appealing in a district that’s predominantly Democratic.
Clay’s ad could be the first salvo in an impending ad blitz from the two candidates. According to the most recent filings from the Federal Elections Commission, Carnahan had over $488,000 of cash on hand while Clay had about $406,000 in the bank. Since winning the Democratic primary is tantamount to election in the 1st congressional district, both candidates could spend the lion's share of that money on ads before the Aug. 7 primary.
Click below to listen to the ad: