Wel­come to Ad Watch, our newest spe­cial series, which will run week­ly from now until elec­tion week. The pur­pose of this series is to attempt to cat­a­log, or index, the many cam­paign ads that are going up on tele­vi­sion (and some­times radio) to influ­ence elec­tions in the Pacif­ic North­west. In each install­ment, we’ll briefly describe ads we’ve seen that are being paid for by can­di­dates, bal­lot mea­sure coali­tions, polit­i­cal par­ties, or shad­owy spe­cial inter­ests mas­querad­ing as grass­roots groups, and pro­vide links so you can watch the ads for yourself.

This week in Ad Watch:

  • Our Wash­ing­ton, a coali­tion of unions, Demo­c­ra­t­ic donors, and the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Gov­er­nor’s Asso­ci­a­tion (DGA), have unveiled their first anti-Rob McKen­na TV spot. It’s titled Clean Up, and it is accom­pa­nied by a new web­site, The Real McKen­na. The cen­tral theme of the ad is “Rob McKen­na isn’t who he says he is.”
  • The afore­men­tioned anti-McKen­na ad was launched only days after the Repub­li­can Gov­er­nors Asso­ci­a­tion (RGA) put up their first anti-Jay Inslee ad. Titled Time after Time, it attacks Jay Inslee for vot­ing in favor of the Amer­i­can Recov­ery and Rein­vest­ment Act (ARRA). The ad char­ac­ter­izes ARRA as a fail­ure, when in real­i­ty, it saved mil­lions of jobs.
  • Inslee’s own lat­est ad is titled Built, and in it, the Demo­c­ra­t­ic guber­na­to­r­i­al stan­dard-bear­er points out that in the pri­vate sec­tor, not all firms suc­ceed… but some star­tups go on to be big, suc­cess­ful com­pa­nies like Boe­ing or Microsoft. Inslee has said he wants to encour­age and pro­mote inno­v­a­tive star­tups as gov­er­nor, espe­cial­ly in the field of clean energy.
  • Rob McKen­na’s newest ad is titled Good Rea­sons and attempts to put a shine on McKen­na’s record as attor­ney gen­er­al, and to inoc­u­late McKen­na against Democ­rats’ “war on women” frame. It ends by say­ing “As gov­er­nor, Rob McKen­na will con­tin­ue pro­tect­ing Wash­ing­ton’s women and chil­dren. After all, he has good reasons.”
  • Wash­ing­ton Unit­ed for Mar­riage has unveiled its lat­est pro-mar­riage equal­i­ty spot, titled Boehler. It fea­tures Robin and Steve Boehler talk­ing about one of their daugh­ters (who is a les­bian) and their hope that she will be able to mar­ry the woman she loves when she’s ready.

Did we miss an add that should be on this list? Let us know in the comments.

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

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5 replies on “Ad Watch: Our Washington goes after Rob McKenna, says he’s not who he says he is”

  1. Wow, Rob McKen­na, makes less than a Cor­po­rate Attor­ney, makes less than a start­ing NFL Foot­ball Play­er ????, yet some jerk / fake actor, wants you to believe he is rip­ping off the pub­lic. Bet­ter yet WA State does have the high­est min­i­mum wage, the most ille­gal Lati­nos with dri­vers licences and now gay mar­riage. Fun­ny, Jay Inslee now wants you to believe ‘it’s time to get to work’, real­ly what have the Democ­rats been doing the last eight years?. Dri­ving busi­ness under with their exces­sive tax­es. And i’m to believe that Jay Inslee, is respon­si­ble for Boe­ing’s suc­cess. Yeah right. I would rather have a edu­cat­ed lawyer as gov­er­nor than some for­mer ‘truck dri­ver’ who attend­ed the worst high school in Seat­tle. Oh by the way, Jay Inslee’s wife looks like a dog. Wow, Jay Inslee wrote a ‘book’, five years ago. Take a bow, Christian

  2. The ad against Rob McKen­na with the woman who states that he is not who he says he is, is insane. I am a proud Demo­c­rat but please, to infer that Rob McKen­na should­n’t back fel­low Repub­li­cans is ridicu­lous. I think a Demo­c­rat who backed a Repub­li­can would not be thought of well, who is he sup­posed to sup­port? What a stu­pid ad. I have no inten­tion of vot­ing for Rob McKen­na, but please don’t insult my intel­li­gence to make me think he is bad because he backed Bush and McCain/Palin.

    1. Yeah, that’s the sec­ond of the ads released by Our Wash­ing­ton. The one linked to in this post is the first. No doubt there are more coming. 

      Cheap attacks, includ­ing the guilt-by-asso­ci­a­tion vari­ety, have long been a sta­ple of neg­a­tive polit­i­cal adver­tis­ing. Part of it is exper­i­men­ta­tion — the enti­ties respon­si­ble are throw­ing mud to see what sticks.

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