Illinois Senate candidate Alexi Giannoulias has released a new television spot, in which he takes a position that some other Democrats have been reluctant to take: right next to President Obama.
The coming election cycle looks to be a difficult one for Democrats. Much has been made of the anti-incumbent sentiment in the country, and President Obama's approval rating is falling even here in his adoptive home state.
As a result, some Democrats have positioned themselves as relatively independent, moving away from the party leadership and from party identification.
Not Giannoulias. All the words his new spot are spoken by President Obama, in a speech he gave supporting his candidacy, praising Giannoulias for running a campaign that doesn't take money from federal lobbyists. The first image of the ad is the two men hugging in slow motion, as gentle music plays in the background.
Giannoulias' campaign told the Associated Press the ad will begin airing statewide Thursday. People familiar with the campaign's plans say it will spend about $500,000 on the ad.
Watch the spot, then vote in our poll: is it helpful or hurtful for Giannoulias to be playing up his connection to the President at this phase in the campaign?