Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee are taking to the airwaves with a new TV ad that criticizes President Obama's support for the auto bailout by negatively portraying its impact on car dealerships.
“In 2009, under the Obama administration's bailout of General Motors, Ohio dealerships were forced to close,” the narrator of the 30-second ad says.
The commercial goes on to feature an Ohio car salesman explaining that his business was negatively impacted by the move.
"I received a letter from General Motors. They were suspending my credit line," the man says. "We had thirty-some employees that were out of work."
The ad's release coincides with Obama's planned trip to Ohio on Wednesday, where he will be campaigning in Akron and Mansfield.
In a release, the Romney campaign did not specify the states in which the ad is running.
“This ad in Ohio is a new low for the Romney campaign, and instead of trying to deceive Ohioans they should get their facts straight because there are now 2,200 more Ohioans employed in dealerships than when the President took office,” responded Obama campaign spokesman Frank Benenati.
Both Obama and Romney are banking that their respective postures on the auto bailout will help them in rust belt states like Ohio heavy with large numbers of working-class voters and auto industry employees and former employees.
Even downballot candidates are taking up the issue. Last month, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) released television ads highlighting the positive impact of the auto bailout on their home state economies.