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The 2012 presidential campaign might not reach fever-pitch until the party conventions this summer, but Barack Obama’s Super PAC is wasting no time, going on the air this week with a television advertisement meant to define presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney as the candidate of the rich.

The 30-second spot picks up on the Obama administration’s recent focus on the “Buffett Rule,” or ensuring that the wealthy pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes, attacking Romney for paying a far lower rate on his $21 million in earnings last year. The commercial has $500,000 behind it, and is airing in the battleground states of Iowa, Ohio, Virginia, and Florida, all carried by the president four years ago.

Recalling the George W. Bush re-election campaign’s successful use of early TV spending to plant doubts in voters’ minds about the character and personality of 2004 Democratic nominee John Kerry, the pro-Obama Super PAC, Priorities USA Action, appears determined to frame this election not as a referendum on the Obama presidency, but rather as a deeply personal argument about economic fairness.

Leaning heavily on a photo of Romney and fellow Bain Capital executives flamboyantly brandishing money in the 1980s, the spot uses a more recent picture of Romney’s face imposed over the old to bring the point home.

Here’s the video:

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Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons and one novel. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

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Reprinted with permission from ProPublica

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