Founded by Steve Schale, the Florida director for former President Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign, the pro-Biden Unite the Country committee is airing a 30-second commercial as part of a joint television and digital ad buy worth $650,000, which is almost $20,000 more than the former vice president’s campaign has spent in the early state in the whole month of November.
Entitled “Courage,” the PAC’s first Iowa ad will touch upon Biden’s support for same-sex marriage and the Violence Against Women Act. It features images and video footage of the former vice president juxtaposed with some of his speeches discussing his record and stances on key issues.
In the clip, Biden discusses “basic, fundamental, universal human rights.”
“The right to be educated. The right to marry who you choose. The right to live free from the threat of violence and fear.”
“Imagine. Imagine what we can build,” the former vice president is heard saying in the ad.
As Politico notes, the Biden campaign and PACs supportive of his candidacy have already purchased digital and TV spots worth over $2 million. The former vice president has focused mostly on Iowa and upstate New York, airing ads touting his foreign policy expertise, and drawing parallels between himself and President Donald Trump.
Biden originally said that he will not accept super PAC money, only to change his stance in October.
The world is laughing at President Trump. They see him for what he really is: dangerously incompetent and incapable of world leadership.
We cannot give him four more years as commander in chief. pic.twitter.com/IR8K2k54YQ
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) December 5, 2019
Biden’s reversal was met with a strong backlash. Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders’ campaign, for instance, said that Biden needs a super PAC because he has been “unable to generate grassroots support,” according to The Hill.
Accusing the former vice president of relying on corporations and billionaires to fund his presidential bid, the Sanders campaign said that accepting the help of super PACs is “not how we defeat Trump.”
“It’s a recipe to maintain a corrupt political system which enriches wealthy donors and leaves the working class behind,” the campaign argued.
The Vermont senator has long eschewed big-money donations, relying on grassroots support to finance his campaigns. Sanders has also vowed to not attend general election fundraisers for the Democratic National Committee (DNC) in case he becomes the nominee, which means he would not accept such contributions in the general election either.
Along with Sanders, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren has made an effort to shun big-money donors, rejecting the help of super PACs. However, Warren seeded her presidential bid with big money raised for her Senate campaign and remains open to fundraising for the DNC.