Two days after Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., released his first radio ad, his Republican opponent, state Treasurer Richard Mourdock, is hitting back with an ad of his own which ties the senator to President Obama.
"It's not just Barack Obama who dug this hole, it's his partner, Dick Lugar," a narrator says in the 60-second spot, Mourdock's first of the campaign. The ad also assails Lugar for voting for TARP, among other things.
The second half of the spot touts Mourdock's record.
"Mourdock will get our economy back on track by standing up to Barack Obama," another narrator adds.
Mourdock's fundraising has been underwhelming so far, so he hasn't had money to spare going up with multiple ads early in the cycle, as some challengers opt to do.
Mourdock spokesman Chris Conner tells Hotline On Call the ad is running in Central Indiana (as Lugar's ad is) and that it is a limited buy. A source familiar with the buys said Mourdock is matching Lugar spot for spot on WIBC, Indianapolis. The source added that both Lugar and Mourdock are scheduled to go dark on Saturday.
The radio spots from Lugar and Mourdock neatly sum up the simplicity of the main point of contention in the race: Lugar's ad tries to spell out how the senator has stood up to Obama, while Mourdock's commercial (which directly addresses the Lugar ad) ties Lugar to the president.