The Obama campaign launched a Spanish-language ad Friday that rebuts a Romney campaign ad that ties the president to Hugo Chávez and the Castro regime.
The 30-second ad features former Miami Mayor Manny Diaz, a Democrat-turned-independent who endorsed Obama in 2008. Diaz, a Cuban-American who served as mayor from 2001 to 2009, accuses Romney of "exploiting our long-suffering community."
"Seen Mitt Romney's attack ads, exploiting our long-suffering community? We are tired of the same old rhetoric." Diaz says. "President Obama doesn't want to mislead us with demagoguery. He is looking for the same thing as we want.
"He's serious about continuing to work with us towards a free and democratic Cuba. No doubt about it," he adds.
The advertisement tracks with the Obama campaign's general strategy of directly rebutting the English-language ads of Romney and his allies. For example, the Obama campaign responded with its own ads in Michigan and Ohio to a Romney campaign spot that makes misleading claims on the auto bailout.
The Romney campaign's ad, reportedly in heavy circulation on Spanish-language television in South Florida, features video clips of Chávez, the socialist Venezuelan president and the daughter of Cuban leader Raúl Castro, Mariela, endorsing Obama.
Republicans kept up their accusations against Obama and Democrats of taking a soft line on Latin American socialism after former President Bill Clinton joked in Florida that he's "not sure there are 81 communists left in Cuba."
A recent Miami Herald/El Nuevo Herald/FIU poll showed Obama with a narrow 51-47 percent lead among Florida Latino voters, with Romney winning nearly three quarters of Cuban-American voters. The pollster, however, had to weight the sample since it may have oversampled Cuban voters.