Looking to shift the subject back to the economy—and away from his controversial response to attacks on U.S. diplomats in Egypt and Libya—Mitt Romney's campaign is out with a new television ad trashing President Barack Obama for failing to crack down on China for unfair trade practices. The spot suggests Obama's policies are driving American manufacturing jobs to China.
The 30-second spot features two stacks of boxes in a warehouse: one meant to represent manufacturing jobs in the U.S., and the other, jobs in China. As the number of boxes from the American stack declines, the ad's narrator says, "Under Obama, we've lost over half a million manufacturing jobs and, for the first time, China is beating us."
The ad then knocks Obama for passing up multiple opportunities to penalize China for manipulating its currency: "Seven times, Obama could have stopped China's cheating. Seven times, he refused."
Next the spot shifts to Romney, who is shown speaking to a small group of people in what appears to be a factory. "It's time to stand up to the cheaters and make sure we protect jobs for the American people," Romney is shown saying.
The Romney campaign did not say where the ad is running or how much it's spending to air it.
China has been a common topic in Romney's stump speech in recent months. But speaking at a rally in Fairfax, Va., Romney seemed to go out of his way to slam Obama on the subject, accusing the president of doing nothing as China has stolen software and ideas from American companies and violated trade rules.
Romney vowed he would crack down on China if elected president—insisting he would declare the nation a "currency manipulator."
"We're going to make sure China knows we mean business," he declared.