The Kirk For Senate campaign will launch its first Spanish television ad tomorrow, titled “Su Senador,” highlighting Senator Kirk’s work on behalf of Illinois’ Hispanic community and residents. The ad will run on Univision and Telemundo until the end of the election cycle.
Senator Kirk has consistently broken from his party to support and advocate for comprehensive immigration reform. In 2013, he was one of 14 Senate Republicans to support comprehensive immigration reform and has continued the effort throughout his term, working with organizations like the Illinois Business Immigration Council. In 2005, Senator Kirk launched his Abuelitas program that has reunited over 3,000 separated families. He is fluent in Spanish and studied at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico.
So far, Univision, which airs on WGBO Ch. 66, reported the Kirk campaign bought seven ads for this week at a cost of $3,175. No spending report was on file with the Federal Communications Commission for Telemundo, which airs on WSNS Ch. 44.
An excellent ad (I had to look at the translation) I think this does 3 things:
1. Shows that he has his head in the game.
2. Doubts any nay-sayers who question his ability to function post-stroke
3. Shows the immigrant community that in this race they have someone who doesn’t just pander, but who is actually on their side.
Considering that Kirk was on record as supporting Trump almost a full year after Trump began his Mexican immigrants are rapists and we have to build a wall routine, this ad campaign is disingenuous at best.
I have never been entirely sure about his attacks on his party’s nominee for president being the best approach. And his several mis-steps explaining about who he’d vote for instead are cringe-inducing. However, despite the people here who are mocking his accent, he gave it a go. He did not use a voice-over as so many pols do when trying to reach their Spanish speaking constituency. For that I give him props and I give this ad a B.
Once upon a different life time, I heard something a Latino politician in Dallas, TX, said about commercials on Spanish-language television, “You can always tell who the white politicians are because their ads are always only in Spanish.”
It is smart to reach out to your constituents in every way you can, so I certainly don’t hold that against Sen. Kirk.
But this ad is pandering, pure and simple pandering. Sen. Kirk is scared he will lose this fall, and he is trying to improve his chances by directly pandering to an audience the Republican party at the federal level has had little use for in past elections.
Will Sen. Kirk air a similar ad in English on the major networks? If he doesn’t, it will raise real concerns about his willingness to publicly oppose Trump.
Also, while airing an ad in Spanish on Univisión & Telemundo is nice, the production values really aren’t that great. The message is he opposes Trump - with a quote translated into Spanish - and supports immigration reform. To illustrate the point, the ad shows a clip of what could be mistaken for stock footage of a man and child. And, worse, there is no quote supporting the claim.
Voters are smart enough to see through this ad and recognize the effort as a desperate and kind of cynical attempt to appeal for their votes.