As the Republican primary heats up, that can only mean more ads. Which ones succeed? Which fail? We'll be reviewing them as they come out. Today we have a new trust-based ad from Jon Huntsman.
The Ad: Jon Huntsman, "Restoring Trust"
The Issues: Trust, Fidelity, Dependability, Consistency, Reliability, etc. etc.
The Message: Everyone's sad and poor and doesn't trust Washington because Washington, specifically that fuzzy person talking to Wolf Blitzer who we call Barack Obama, is the one that made them sad and poor. But, aha! To the actually hopeful rescue comes Greg Germann lookalike Jon Huntsman. He's a true, consistent conservative. And how can you trust him on that? Well, uh, he worked for Ronald Reagan? Yeah, that's the best Huntsman, who's not nearly crazy enough to compete with this bunch of crazies, has going for him. A couple pictures of a young Huntsman standing near the Gipper, looking consistently conservative on an airplane as they fly over everyone who was so rich and happy in the '80s. The 1980s: What a fertile, happy time. Make the next four years just like the '80s with Jon Huntsman!
Who It's For: Republicans who are getting a little panicked about having to choose between that group of wackos. "Hey, I'm kinda normal!" this ad cries to them. "Plus, look! Reagan!"
What Everyone Else Sees: A way far behind candidate, one who is actually not that bad, gingerly putting a toe in the muck but not really taking to it.
The Effect: As with yesterday's ad, Huntsman remains elusive and ill-defined. That's probably because, again, he's not going to make too many crazy claims like his peers in the race, but he's gotta try something. Why is it so hard to pay attention to this guy? It's a confusing but ever-present problem that's evident even in this trying to be forceful ad. C+