The part that sealed it for me was the ad’s reference to nearing halftime in America. That makes little sense in historic terms, but think about what hypothetical “halftime” is coming up. The halftime of Obama’s presidency. He gets two terms constitutionally, we’re approaching the end of the first. This ad encourages us to stick it out through the second half…of something.
“It’s halftime. Both teams are in their locker rooms discussing what they can do to win this game in the second half. It’s halftime in America, too.” Eastwood says. “People are out of work and they’re hurting. And they’re all wondering what they’re gonna do to make a comeback.”
Now take into consideration the fact that Chrysler, the ad’s sponsor, is nearly half-owned by the pro-Obama United Auto Workers (UAW) union. Until recently the company was even partially owned by the U.S. government under the Obama Administration, which proudly touts its bailing out of the union-run disaster, er, automaker.
Look back at that line. Two teams? Two parties. What we’re going to do in the second half? Which party will lead the country. Then:
Pointing to improvement in the auto industry as a positive sign, the “Dirty Harry” star goes on, “Detroit’s showing us it can be done. …This country can’t be knocked out with one punch. We get right back up again and when we do, the world is going to hear the roar of our engines.”
Don’t worry, America. Things are getting better and America, like Detroit, is rising again.
Top Obama political adviser David Axelrod describes the ad as a “powerful spot”. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was asked about the taxpayer-funded spot today. He was thrilled. In fact, he found a pro-Obama message in the ad (video at the link).
Kyle Wingfield of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes:
But the halftime Chrysler commercial starring Clint Eastwood, describing America as being in its own “halftime,” was just overtly politicized. After all, what else could “halftime” have meant, in the year 2012, than halfway through the eight years Barack Obama would be president if re-elected this fall? I’m fairly certain it wasn’t a prediction that the country will break up circa 2248 A.D.
Chrysler of course has a right to political speech. But it would be nice if the company wouldn’t be so brazen about its leanings while still owing the entire country — left, right and center — billions of dollars.
“I was, frankly, offended by it,” said Karl Rove on Fox News Monday. “I’m a huge fan of Clint Eastwood, I thought it was an extremely well-done ad, but it is a sign of what happens when you have Chicago-style politics, and the president of the United States and his political minions are, in essence, using our tax dollars to buy corporate advertising.”
Republicans and Democrats seem to agree the spot was pro-Obama, Democrats obviously more thrilled about that fact than Republicans. What would’ve been is if the company had taken the millions of dollars it cost to run the pro-Obama propaganda and instead further payed back the American taxpayers.