Republican gubernatorial candidate Neel Kashkari is back on the California airwaves with a TV ad for the first time since the June primary.
He only has a fraction of the campaign money that Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown has. So he’s taking his best shot, with a provocative ad that shows a kid drowning in a swimming pool – until Kashkari pulls him out.
“Jerry Brown betrayed our kids to protect his donors. When I’m governor, I’ll fight for kids, not against them,” Kashkari says in the ad, which his campaign says is running in every media market in the state - though it wouldn't say how much.
The ad appears to attack Brown’s appeal of a recent court ruling that struck down California’s teacher tenure law, though it doesn’t specifically say.
Republican political consultant Beth Miller says it’s Kashkari’s latest attempt to drive the campaign conversation and differentiate himself from Brown.
“It’s an uphill challenge for Neel Kashkari against an opponent who doesn’t care that he has an opponent. With $24 million, he can afford not to care,” Miller says.
Brown’s first TV ads of his entire re-election campaign went up last week. They focus on Propositions 1 and 2, not the governor’s race – which polls show Brown leads by a wide margin.