For the past few weeks, whenever an Ohioan left his TV on for too long, he would see Sen. Sherrod Brown’s head on a cartoon body. He would see this more often than he saw Brown himself. The Now or Never PAC, funded by two Missouri millionaires, spent $1.2 million on a commercial in which a googly-eyed Brown stole money from families and coal plants. Another big buy, from Associated Builders and Contractors, portrayed Brown as a demented cartoon, sitting at a desk with an “I Love Taxes” coffee mug, rubber-stamping documents with an Obama campaign logo.
Democrats didn’t know what to make of this stuff. Today, after Brown clinched a 5-point win, his aides were still baffled by the stupid commercials. At a news conference in the Democratic Party headquarters, Brown predicted that “voters will, in a funny sort of way, welcome beer ads, car ads, and detergent ads.” He derided Karl Rove—whose American Crossroads GPS spent millions on the presidential race in Ohio—as someone who “doesn’t understand Ohio like he thinks he does” and whose ad strategy was “pretty discredited” by the humiliating losses.
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