Gingrich on air in Iowa ahead of caucuses

December 5, 2011 - 11:55 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — TITLE: "Is The America We Love A Thing Of the Past? Newt Says No."

LENGTH: One minute.

AIRING: Scheduled for Iowa television and cable markets.

KEY IMAGES: The ad is laden with Americana, down to the white picket fence, the Statue of Liberty and the American stars and stripes.

Gingrich's ad uses stock images of Main Street, a mountain range, a steel plant and a farm, all appealing to a sense of patriotism. As Gingrich speaks, the imagery fades from one tableau to another.

"Some people say the America we know and love is a thing of the past. I don't believe that, because working together I know we can rebuild America," Gingrich says into the camera in the minute-long spot.

"We can revive our economy and create jobs, shrink government and the regulations that strangle our businesses, throw out the tax code and replace it with one that is simple and fair," Gingrich continues as the video shows a woman working as a florist and men working in a factory.

"We can regain the world's respect by standing strong again, being true to our faith and respecting one another," he says as the ad shows Marines in dress uniforms and church steeples.

"We can return power to the people and to the states we live in so we'll all have more freedom, opportunity and control of our lives. Yes, working together, we can and will rebuild the America we love," Gingrich concludes while the ad shows a rancher herding cattle, the Des Moines statehouse and a teacher working with a student.

ANALYSIS: The Reagan-esque, upbeat ad doesn't mention any of Gingrich's rivals for the Republican presidential nomination and instead tugs at caucus-goers' heartstrings.

Gingrich, enjoying a popular surge, is using his first ad to promote a positive vision for a campaign rooted in optimism and ideas. The former House speaker is leaning heavily on rosy nostalgia as he looks to quickly build support that his rivals have had months — if not years — to put together.

Gingrich's ad is a hearty helping of what Republican voters are looking for — American greatness, criticism of Washington's regulation and taxes, and faith. And while it never explicitly criticizes President Barack Obama, the ad clearly depicts Gingrich as the answer to the struggling economy that tops voters' concerns.

Gingrich's campaign imploded and went broke during the summer but is having something of a comeback just as voters are tuning in. Gingrich went into October with more than a million dollars in debt but seems to have picked up the fundraising pace as his rivals stumbled. Coming off a string of strong debate performances, Gingrich has turned to GOP donors and voters with the pitch that he's best suited to take on Obama next year.

Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Rep. Ron Paul of Texas already are airing ads in Iowa.