Congressional campaign ads targeting President Donald Trump appear to be off to an early start, with one candidate in California already asking voters: “How do you stop a bully?”
The TV ad, which the Los Angeles Times reports first aired Monday, begins and ends with black-and-white close-ups of an angry Trump.
How do you stop a bully? Democratic candidate Sara Hernandez of Los Angeles says it takes a teacher like her. With lines reminiscent of Trump’s “outsider” campaign message, however, she also emphasizes that she’s not “part of the establishment or special interests,” and that she’s been kicking “real butt” for the community. “Take Trump back to school,” the 30-second spot concludes.
It’s too early in the game to know how well Hernandez, a lawyer who has worked as a city council aide and nonprofit head, will fare in the race for the 34th Congressional District. Twenty-three candidates are running for the position that opened up when Xavier Becerra became state’s attorney general.
The ad is likely a taste of things to come in the lead-up to April’s primary race.
Fourth-term Rep. Mike Coffman (R-Colo.) was the first Republican in the nation to take on Trump with a paid advertisement before he even became president, Politico reported in August.
“People ask me, ‘What do you think about Trump?’” Coffman says at the start of the ad. “Honestly, I don’t care for him much.” (He says the same about Hillary Clinton.)
The Iraq War vet adds: “If Donald Trump is president, I’ll stand up to him, plain and simple.”
He offered the same ad in Spanish. Latinos make up some 20 percent of the 6th Congressional District, which includes suburban Denver. Coffman likely declared his stance early because his district tends to be hotly contested and Trump supporters could face an uphill battle, Politico notes.
But some of Coffman’s constituents were angry last month when he and three other GOP representatives from Colorado backed steps to dismantle the Affordable Care Act, just the way Trump wanted them to. Coffman ducked out of a local meeting to find several frustrated voters waiting to talk to him about the issue.
As for the rest of the country, campaigns will be heating up soon.