Branstad runs ad during UNI/Michigan State game

I just saw a commercial for Terry Branstad's gubernatorial campaign during halftime of the University of Northern Iowa's game against Michigan State in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA tournament. That was probably a good way to spend part of Branstad's campaign war chest. An enormous number of Iowans must be watching that game, though who knows how many were paying attention during the halftime break. To my knowledge, this is the first television commercial run by a Republican candidate in the governor's race.

I'll post the video if I can find it on YouTube. The ad includes short clips from Branstad's "comeback" speech in which he announced his candidacy. It highlights his key campaign promises: creating 200,000 new jobs, increasing family incomes by 25 percent, reducing government spending by "at least 15 percent" and giving Iowa children a world-class education. The commercial also features testimonials from unidentified Iowans about why they support Branstad ("He's done the job before and he can do it again," "He's honest," "He's just a good man," and so on). The viewer also sees some classic rural Iowa footage of Branstad's campaign bus on the road, snow-covered fields, a country church and so on.

I happen to be taping the game so that my kids can watch it tomorrow, so if I have time later I will do a rough transcript of the ad. If you're watching live, please post a comment to let me know how many times you saw the ad run during the game.

UPDATE: I didn't do the transcript, because I found the video and posted that after the jump. Click "there's more" if you want to watch the commercial.

LATE UPDATE: The Branstad ad ran again on Sunday during the Michigan State/Tennessee game. Craig Robinson predicted (or perhaps got a heads up) that the Branstad campaign would have bought ad time during the Elite Eight game in case UNI advanced.

Terry Branstad - Comeback from Governor Branstad 2010 on Vimeo.

  • No Wonder They Lost!

    Ok, so I can't really blame it on Bransted, but it does feel good.

    • they were playing great in the first half

      but they weren't hitting shots so well in the second. Could it be a coincidence that Branstad's ad ran at halftime?

  • A-

    A very well-done ad for this stage of the game. It's positive and upbeat--feels like a general campaign ad. A good job of incorporating a diverse crowd (in age, race, and background).

    Branstad sounds strong and stays on message--even if the message is devoid of detail. (It's a little bit like saying he supports puppies and sunny days. Who doesn't want world-class schools and rising incomes?)

    Grade: A-

    A strong early-campaign ad. He'll need to be more specific/single issue in his next ad though, or people might get the impression that he lacks substance.  

    • so far I'm amazed

      that journalists aren't calling him on the fact that he has no idea what cuts he would make to reduce government spending by 15 percent over 5 years. He has been making that promise since January and was planning his candidacy for four or five months before that. He should be able to demonstrate some kind of road map for keeping this promise. He can afford to hire policy advisers to work this stuff out.

      The media are giving Branstad a total pass on this.

      • Branstad's pass

        I agree. It seems the media has been asleep on this entire race so far. My guess is that the first debate on April 7 will shake things up and get the media on his (and all the candidates) case.

        Also, it's good to be here!

    • by the way

      Good to see you!

      That's Branstad: there may not be much substance to his message, but he will stay on message.

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