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Obama campaign ad attacks McCain on economy

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Jake Turcotte

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It may not have risen to the level of a Patrick Swayze Road-House-esque brawl, but the Obama folks are punching back.

Faced with declining polls and criticism by Democratic strategists that the Obama team isn't being tough enough, a new round of harder-hitting ads have been released to counter the McCain attacks.

One of the ads, titled "Fix the Economy," shows clips of John McCain discussing the economy in positive terms interspersed with average Americans expressing their concerns, doubts and fears of the current state of economic affairs.

The idea is to communicate that McCain is out of touch with average middle-class Americans. Of course, Mr. McCain didn't help his own cause when asked by pastor Rick Warren on Saturday to define what income level in America constitutes being rich.

"I think if you're just talking about income, how about five million," McCain said. Almost immediately after that statement, however, he did recognize he stepped in it and predicted his statement would get plenty of use by his opponent. He was right.

Townhall gone bad?

Regardless, watching the ad is one thing. Reading the text is another. It almost reads like McCain and average voters were having a townhall meeting gone really, really bad:

McCain: I don't think we're heading into a recession.

Average voter: I think we are absolutely in a recession.

Average voter 2: I sometimes struggle just to get the essentials, you know the milk the bread the eggs.

McCain: There's been great progress economically.

Average voter 3: The economy is in a rut.

McCain: We've had a pretty good prosperous time with low unemployment

Average voter 4: The way the economy is, is the bleakest of times

Average voter 5: I'm worried. I'm really worried.

If this was an actual conversation that McCain had with voters, then turn out the lights. So the ad-makers did the next best thing: present it as such, as a contrast between McCain and the American citizen.

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