Ted Cruz's campaign and two pro-Cruz super PACs are airing ads against Donald Trump's position on abortion from a 1999 "Meet the Press" interview
"I am pro-choice in every respect," Trump said in the interview
Ted Cruz and two allied super PACs launched a television broadside against Donald Trump on Monday, dedicating big money behind ads attacking the billionaire for “New York values,” particularly past support for partial-birth abortion.
The ads use identical quotes from Trump’s 1999 interview on “Meet the Press” in which he declares “I am pro-choice in every respect.”
Campaigns and super PACs are not allowed to coordinate on advertising, but the unified front against Trump comes just one week before the Iowa caucuses and continue Cruz’s theme of painting the New York billionaire as out-of-touch with Iowa values.
“Hey I lived in New York City and Manhattan all my life, so my views are a little bit different than if I lived in Iowa,” Trump said on the “Meet the Press” interview, a quote spliced into the Cruz campaign ad.
Super PAC ads
The super PAC ads come from rival pro-Cruz groups Keep the Promise I and Stand for Truth.
The Cruz-endorsed Keep the Promise I group, moved Monday in two 30-second advertisements to paint Trump as politically opportunistic. The new spot, “Extreme,” uses the Trump interview with “Meet the Press” host Tim Russert. A second Keep the Promise spot, which was already being shown to voters on digital platforms, uses Trump praising Cruz as a conservative fighter.
They are part of a $2.5 million television campaign in Iowa and South Carolina by Keep the Promise I, the first negative spots from the super PAC.
Stand for Truth, a relatively new super PAC with as of yet unknown backers and advisers, latched on to the interview as well and shows Trump on Times Square billboards speaking about “New York values” – the term used by Cruz himself to attack Trump in Iowa.
A Stand for Truth spokesman, Eric Lycan, did not respond to a request for comment Monday about when the ad would air or how much money was behind it. The group has pledged to spend $4 million on his behalf.
And the torrent of new ads continued all day, with a new Keep the Promise spot Monday evening that targeted Trump on a different vulnerability: his support for Obamacare, or as the ad christened it, “Trumpcare.”
“First there was Hillarycare.” the ad begins. “Then there was Obamacare,” it continues, drawing on Trump quotes in support of a coverage mandate. “We can’t afford Trumpcare.”
CNN’s Dana Bash contributed to this report