The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Mark Pryor injects Ebola into the Arkansas Senate race

On Monday, a Republican Senate candidate in New Mexico launched a campaign ad featuring an image of James Foley's murderer.

Not to be outdone, Sen. Mark Pryor's (D-Ark.) campaign is out with a new ad ... featuring the Ebola virus.

The ad contrasts scary coverage of the Ebola outbreak in Africa with a vote Rep. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) took "to cut billions from our nation's medical disaster and emergency programs." Flashing on-screen are the words: "Only one against pandemic response."

The vote referenced is a January 2013 reauthorization of public health and emergency programs. Cotton was one of 29 House members to vote against it. This isn't the first time Pryor has attacked Cotton on such votes, but it is the first time he's attached the word "Ebola" to them.

It might not be the "Daisy" ad, but Pryor's ad is certainly in the same genre of scare-tastic political advertising. And when it comes to him and other red-state Democrats fighting to keep their jobs this fall, expect more like it.

Update: Cotton spokesman David Ray responds: "Sen. Pryor's desperation is comical. In Sen. Pryor's world, he doesn't have to take responsibility for rubber-stamping the Obama agenda over 90 percent of the time, but wants Arkansans to believe Tom Cotton is responsible for everything from Ebola to crabgrass and male-pattern baldness."