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Ad watch: Crossroads plays defense

Crossroads GPS, "Broke"

What it says: "Obama: Dishonest on taxes because he has failed on jobs."

What it means: That Republicans think Obama's attacks are working. Crossroads GPS, a Republican-aligned non-profit, usually stays on the attack in ads. This one is defending Mitt Romney against a recent Obama spot charging that the GOP nominee would raise taxes on the middle class. That charge is based on a study from the Tax Policy Center, disputed by Republicans because it relies on assumptions about Romney's plans. 

Who will see it: It's a one-week, $5.3 million buy in the same states where Obama's ad is running -- Colorado, Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, Ohio and Virginia.

Factchecker: In August, our Fact Checker deemed Obama's argument true. "To some extent, the Romney campaign has been hoist with its own petard by refusing to provide sufficient detail that shows how the numbers add up in Romney’s tax and budget plans. So we are left with the judgment of a respected and independent third party," he wrote.

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.

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Republicans debate tonight. The South Carolina GOP primary and the Nevada Democratic caucuses are next on Feb. 20. Get caught up on the race.
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