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Gov. Phil Murphy in a new campaign ad linking the GOP field to former President Donald Trump. (Photo: Murphy for Governor/NJ Globe.)

Murphy uses Trump to smack GOP rivals in new ad

Governor contrasts his record with former president

By David Wildstein, May 18 2021 9:00 am

Gov. Phil Murphys’ campaign has launched a new ad linking the field of Republican gubernatorial candidates to Donald Trump and then contrasting him with the former president.

Narrated by a woman, the ad alleges that the GOP candidates are in a contest to claim the votes of Trump voters.  While using a shot of the back of Trump’s head, the ad takes a shot at Republicans “downplaying Covid” and “hyping a stolen election,” while touting Murphy’s support of reproductive rights.

The ad, called “Easy,” is part of a $5 million paid media blitz by the Murphy campaign that began one week ago and will continue until the Democratic primary on June 8.

This ad will be broadcast using over-the-top (OTTP) and digital platforms.

Script: “Know what the Republicans running for governor argue about?  Who’s like Trump? They all are.  Downplaying Covid.  Hyping a stolen election.  Restricting reproductive rights.  Dividing people.  Know who’s not like Trump?  Phil Murphy.  Phil Murphy brings us together.  He relies on science.  Protects our reproductive rights.  And made millionaires pay their fair share to give the middle class a break.  Back to Trump?  Or moving New Jersey forward?

Murphy has raised over $3.5 million and with public matching funds, he must spend $7.3 million while unopposed for the Democratic nomination.

Despite the blueness of New Jersey, it’s been 44 years since the state has re-elected a Democratic governor and 56 years since a Democratic incumbent has begun their campaign more popular than unpopular.

Murphy is seeking to become the first Democratic governor to win re-election in 44 years, and the first Democratic governor to launch a bid for a second term with a high job approval rating since 1965.

A Monmouth University poll released two weeks ago puts Murphy’s approvals at 57%-35%, with 48% of the state saying he deserves a second term and 43% wanting someone else.

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