Republican incumbent John Boozman is launching his first television advertisement in the race against Democrat Conner Eldridge and Libertarian Frank Gilbert for an Arkansas U.S. Senate seat. The ad tries to convey that the former U.S. Representative and first term U.S. Senator is in touch with his state.
"He's traveled all cross our state getting to know us and listening to our problems," the ad's narrator says, "the people of Arkansas know, John Boozman puts us first."
Boozman's Democratic rival has repeatedly attacked him for months for his travel schedule. Eldridge says Boozman has taken too many trips to foreign nations and not spent enough time in Arkansas.
The television spot casts Boozman as a champion of veterans, Medicare, education, and businesses. It has scenes of agricultural fields, a playground, and a factory. There are no minorities in the ad.
The Associated Press reports that Boozman's campaign is allocating over $300,000 for the 30-second ad buy to run statewide. Reporter Andrew DeMillo notes it's a far cry from the $68 million doled out in the 2014 U.S. Senate contest between Democratic incumbent Mark Pryor and his successful challenger Republican Tom Cotton.
Eldridge has released a number of web ads since launching his campaign. He gained some national attention for a type of ad now popping up across the country, linking Republican candidates to presidential nominee Donald Trump. That ad used Trump's words to berate Boozman for supporting the candidate, “she ate like a pig…I’d look her right in that fat, ugly face of hers,"
Eldridge will be at the University of Arkansas for the first U.S. Senate debate of the campaign. Boozman will not be in attendance. He's only accepted one debate offer from AETN. Libertarian Frank Gilbert will be debating Eldridge.
This article correctly reports that Sen. Boozman will not be in attendance at the debate but KUAR did not confirm those details directly from the Boozman campaign at the time of publication. Boozman will not be at the debate. His campaign says they never received a formal invitation from Eldridge's campaign. Sen. Boozman's campaign has so far stated he will only participate in one debate at AETN.