Analyzing the Chris Collins' attack ad on Nate McMurray

LISTEN: Carl Calabrese, Bob Davis weigh in on controversial ad

Mike Baggerman
September 24, 2018 - 10:33 am
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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WBEN) - Congressman Chris Collins struck first with a television attack ad against his democratic opponent, Nathan McMurray.

The 30-second ad featured a video released by McMurray which shows the democrat speaking Korean. The video featured subtitles which suggested McMurray plans to send jobs to China and Korea and have American companies hire more foreign workers. At the end, it shows a still photo of Collins at the Trump rally in Buffalo endorsing the message.

"The problem with what (Collins' team) did is they took that ad and put false subtitles over it," McMurray said on Sunday's edition of Hardline with Kevin Hardwick. "They made it look more grainy. They made it look like more of an attack ad. They're really trying to punish me for being someone who worked hard, learned foreign languages, developed skills, and had a decent career. I really think it's unjustifiable. It's a desperate act from a desperate campaign."

Bob Davis, a former Erie County Republican Chairman and President of The Partnership marketing firm, said that the advertisement will make people think "scratch their heads" about McMurray. 

"Is this really what McMurray did?" Davis asked. "Something I would suggest 95 percent of the voters didn't realize until they saw that ad."

Davis expects Collins to eventually run advertisements highlighting the congressman's accomplishments in the House of Representatives.

GOP Political Strategist Carl Calabrese discussed the ad on Monday's edition of A New Morning. He said that Collins was in a unique situation where he is an incumbent with a large campaign warchest. Typically, that means your opponent gets ignored throughout the campaign. However, because of the congressman's indictment, he has to change his strategy.

"Define your opponent before they define themselves," Calabrese said about Collins' strategy. "...The first thing (McMurray's team) has to do is undo the painting you already painted of them before they can talk about what they wanted to talk about."

McMurray has yet to release any campaign ads on television stations. In the latest FEC filings, McMurray had $81,772 cash on hand while Collins had $1.3 million. However, these filings came before Collins' indictment on August 8. 

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