Ron Paul launches $1M TV ad push

After a successful Internet fundraising drive over the weekend, Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul on Thursday will launch a new ad aimed at military veterans in key primary states.

In a statement, his campaign said the ad is the first in a "$1 million television push" over the next few weeks" on broadcast and cable in New Hampshire, Iowa, Nevada, Florida and South Carolina.

The 60-second spot, titled "A Veteran's Best Friend," highlights Paul's military service as a surgeon and features two Vietnam War veterans' praising him.

"It takes a veteran to understand a veteran and he is a veteran himself," one of them says. Among the Republican candidates for the presidential nomination, Paul has been the harshest critic of American involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan, putting him at odds with many military families. special report: Election 2012

Campaign Chairman Jesse Benton said, "Our campaign is seeing growing momentum now and is doing this ad blitz to cement ourselves in the top tier." Ron Paul finished third in a recent USA Today/Gallup poll of Republican presidential nomination preferences behind Perry and Romney.

The ad with air during Thursday night's GOP debate in Florida.