The AFL-CIO's super PAC Workers' Voice is launching $100,000 worth of online newspaper ads on Tuesday targeting Ohio Republican Senate nominee Josh Mandel.
The ad parodies Nike's "Witness" ad campaign that featured NBA superstar LeBron James, in the midst of his pre-game ritual of tossing chalk into the air. Instead of James, the Workers' Voice ad -- which the group says will run on the Cleveland Plain Dealer and Akron Beacon Journal homepages and sports pages -- features an image of Mandel with money falling down around him and the text "Witness The Mandel Investigation" at the top. Facebook and Twitter ads will also be part of the campaign.
The ad is a reference to campaign contributions Mandel received from employees of the Suarez Corporation. The company is facing a federal investigation into donations employees gave to Mandel and Republican Rep. Jim Renacci. Mandel has returned the $105,000 he received from Suarez employees "out of an abundance of caution," his campaign said.
James began his career with the Cleveland Cavaliers but since moved on to the Miami Heat, a decision which upset many Cavaliers fans. James and the Heat play the Oklahoma City Thunder tonight in game 4 of the NBA Finals.
The $100,000 Workers' Voice is spending is notable, but it's a drop in the bucket compared to the $8 million+ Republican outside groups have spent against Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown.