Remember when Clint Eastwood debated a chair at the Republican National Convention? Everyone was #Eastwooding and the narrative at the time was that President Obama was leading Mitt Romney not only in national polls but in ever elusive campaign momentum. A few weeks later, debate season has made that hilarious Convention moment seem like a long-ago memory. And now, Clint Eastwood is getting a second shot at boosting the Republican nominee as the election heads into the home stretch.
In a new ad produced by the American Crossroads Super PAC — which was co-founded by Karl Rove and is not technically affiliated with the Romney campaign — the venerable actor gives his pitch for why Romney is the guy who can turn America around. “When someone doesn’t get the job done, you’ve gotta hold them accountable,” Eastwood says, as images of the president are shown. “Obama’s second term would be a rerun of the first and our country just couldn’t survive that. We need someone to turn it around fast and that man is Mitt Romney.”
The ad, as Politico’s Mike Allen reported, will debut in swing states as part of a $12.6 million dollar ad buy from the Super PAC. It also stands in seeming opposition, as the Wall Street Journal noted, to Eastwood’s Super Bowl ad for Chrysler called “Halftime in America.” In that spot the grizzled actor opines that he’s “seen a lot of tough eras, a lot of downturns in my life” but that ends on an optimistic note: “This country can’t be knocked out with one punch.”
When “Halftime in America” first debuted, it was criticized as being a de facto Obama ad because it showcased a resurrected Detroit. However Eastwood does utter the line “We find a way through tough times and if we can’t find a way then we’ll make one” — which certainly doesn’t sound like a ringing endorsement.