In final stretch, onslaught of campaign advertising continues

As if TV viewers in battleground states haven't been bombarded with campaign ads already, the release of five new TV ads today illustrates that the ad war is only getting more intense. With all of the debates behind the candidates and most of the major fundraising complete, the only thing left for candidates to do is campaign and make their final appeal to voters through paid media.

President Obama released a one-minute TV ad in what is basically a closing argument. In the ad, the president speaks directly to the voters, insisting the country can't "turn back now."

He lists a series of accomplishments, including the addition of five million new jobs, an increase in exports, the restoration of the auto industry and the return of some U.S. soldiers from Afghanistan.

"We're not there yet, but we've made real progress, and the last thing we should do is turn back now," Mr. Obama implores in the ad.

Laying out his plans for the next four years, the president lists five objectives for a second term. They include investments in education, manufacturing and American energy. He promises to reduce the deficit by cutting spending and asking the wealthy to "pay a little more." The president also vows to keep the 2014 end date for the war in Afghanistan.

The president doesn't mention his opponent, Mitt Romney, until the last seconds of the ad where he asks voters to "compare" his plan to Romney's and "decide which is better."

The president concludes, "It's an honor to be your president and I'm asking for your vote so together we can keep moving America forward."

The ad will run in New Hampshire, Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nevada, and Colorado.

Romney has also released a new TV ad using clips from last night's debate on foreign policy and criticizes the president for showing "weakness" in international affairs, accusing him of being on an "apology tour."

"[T]he reason I call it an apology tour: you went to the Middle East and you flew to Egypt and to Saudi Arabia and to Turkey and Iraq. And you skipped Israel, our closest friend in the region," Romney says in the ad.

Also out today, ads from two super PACs backing Romney.

In a massive ad buy, Restore Our Future announced it's spending $17.7 million on two ads in 10 states, with $10 million of that being spent in Florida, Ohio and Virginia. One ad, "Genuinely Cares," attempts to tackle two issues in one ad: the perception that Romney doesn't care about non-wealthy Americans and that he is weaker than the president on foreign policy.

"I first met Governor Romney during my recovery at Walter Reed. He took a personal interest in one soldier's story and he wanted to know how he could help," double amputee Sgt. Peter Damon (Ret.) says in the ad. "The Mitt Romney I know cares deeply about people who are struggling."

The second ad, "Better," focuses on the economy, imploring that the "change" that needs to be made is voting President Obama out of office.

"In the last four years, high unemployment has become normal," an ominous-sounding narrator says. "We need to make a change. Barack Obama's economy isn't working."

Also, the super PAC founded by President George W. Bush's top adviser Karl Rove, Crossroads GPS, releases a new pro-Romney one-minute TV ad that attempts to paint a picture of Romney as caring and selfless.

In the ad, the Oparowski's, who also spoke at the Republican National Convention, told the story of Romney's relationship with their son, David, who was sick with cancer. "He used to go and visit David in the hospital," a tearful Pat Oparowski says. "David asked Mitt if he would help him write a will."

"He cares about people and their needs," she adds.

The ad, which will run in Ohio and Wisconsin, is part of a larger $17 million ad campaign that began last week focusing on the critical women voting bloc. Romney suffers from a gender gap but has made strides and tightened the gap among women voters in recent weeks. Crossroads spokesperson Jonathan Collegio said Crossroads will likely release additional women-targeted ads over the next two weeks.

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    Leigh Ann Caldwell is a political reporter for