Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and Texas Governor Rick Perry released dueling web videos in preparation for tonight’s debate in Vegas. Their combative clips make competing claims about which candidate has a stronger record on jobs.
If it seems like the Republicans have held a debate each week for the past few months, that’s because they basically have. Thankfully, tonight’s debate will be the last until November 9 after a stretch that included six debates over eight weeks.
Mr. Romney dominated the recent spate of debates knocking Governor Perry from potential frontrunner status to being left for dead by the Beltway media. Some observers believe Governor Perry can pull off an upset by laying low for the debates and striking back with web videos and advertisements produced by his high-priced team. A few hours ahead of tonight’s debate, Governor Perry attempted to set the stage by releasing his newest video, a short clip entitled “America’s Jobs Governor.”
Governor Perry’s video features all the cinematic signatures of his 23-year-old ex-Democrat web video wunderkind, Lucas Baiano. A soaring soundtrack plays behind stunning scenes of railways, oil rigs welding, windfarms, blue collar towns and footage of Governor Perry clad in a hard hat while talking with workers in a factory. The video starts with an edited recording of Bloomberg’s Megan Hughes reporting on the job creation records of Governor Perry, Mr. Romney and their fellow Republican candidate, former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman.
“Perry was really the big winner in our study. Take a look at a number of metrics, he has the best jobs record in his state during his tenure, better than Utah under Huntsman, who would have been second, or Massachusetts under Romney, who would have been last ,” Hughes says in the video.
Mr. Perry’s video then shows clips of him making a speech about his jobs plan at a U.S. Steel factory outside of Pittsburgh last Friday.
“End the overregulation, end the excess litigation, end the bureaucratic intimidation. Let’s get back to what we know works and that’s to get America working again–make what Americans buy, buy what Americans make and sell it to the world,” Governor Perry proclaims in the video.
Mr. Romney’s video, entitled “The Facts,” focuses entirely on Governor Perry. It begins with footage of Governor Perry sparring over his jobs record with ABC newsman George Stephanopoulos.
“I disagree with those numbers,” Governor Perry says to Stephanopoulos.
As the video fades away, crashing drums begin to play as a series of written statements about Governor Perry’s jobs record in Texas appears over the backdrop of a lonely desert road:
“Disagree? It’s a fact. Over 1 million Texans out of work … Unemployment has doubled on Perry’s watch … Nearly half of new jobs in Texas over the last 4 years went to illegal immigrants.”
After the scare quotes, Mr. Romney’s add presents a question asking, “Incumbent politician … Bad jobs record … Won’t face the facts … Sound familiar?”
Mr. Romney’s ad attempts to answer this question with footage of President Obama saying “our economy is now growing at a good clip.” After implying that Governor Perry and President Obama have similar economic philosophies, a written message on the screen asks, “If Rick Perry and Barack Obama don’t think there’s a problem how can they fix it?” The ad closes with a link to a website paid for the Romney campaign called “Rick Perry Career Politician,” which is currently still under construction.
Tonight’s debate begins in approximately five-and-a-half hours. As of this writing, neither video has more than 400 views on YouTube. Watch both clips for yourself below.