WASHINGTON, D.C. — Convinced he's still within striking distance of Sen. Claire McCaskill, Rep. Todd Akin rolled out a new $1 million ad campaign in Missouri on Saturday aimed at rebuilding trust among female voters, just 10 days before the Nov. 6 election.
The latest ad, which the campaign describes as "female-focused," will begin airing Saturday morning statewide, particularly in and around Kansas City and St. Louis.
In the 30-second spot, a male narrator says, "A strong economy means stronger families."
"Married 37 years, the father of six, Todd Akin puts our families first in everything he does."
The positive advertisement, filled with images of families and children, contrasts starkly with a negative spot released Friday by Akin's campaign, which criticized Sen. Claire McCaskill's husband's business practices.
Those two ads will run along with a third new spot, which features former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.
Even with this latest ad buy, both campaigns say that Akin has been heavily outspent in the race; Akin's campaign has put the ratio at seven-to-one.
Still, the mood within the campaign is buoyant leading into the final stretch: An operative close to the campaign says the latest internal poll, conducted this week, shows Akin leading McCaskill 45 percent to 44 percent.
Those numbers match up roughly with a poll released late Friday by the Kansas City Star and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which showed McCaskill leading Akin by just two points, 45 percent to 43 percent — within the poll's four-point margin of error.
The polling landscape in Missouri has been far from conclusive, however. A poll released recently by McCaskill's campaign showed McCaskill leading Akin by 14 points; other outside polls, including Rasmussen and PPP, have shown McCaskill with a slightly less commanding, but solid, lead.