ABC News’ Raelyn Johnson Reports: Former Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C., launched a television ad in New Hampshire Tuesday in an effort to shore up support in the early primary state.
The 30-second spot entitled "Strength of America" begins with Edwards asking, "Will we make America the country of 21st century? That depends on all of us."
The ad includes images of Edwards giving a speech and his wife, Elizabeth Edwards, greeting an elderly voter as the candidate says, "The strength in America is in this room, right now."
Edwards ends the spot with his signature stump line: "It’s time for the president of the United States to ask Americans to be patriotic about something other than war."
Without detailing how much money the campaign is spending on the ad, Edwards’ senior advisor Joe Trippi said it’s a strong media buy. "You’re going to see it a lot if you’re in New Hampshire," Trippi told reporters on a conference call Tuesday.
Edwards is currently polling third in New Hampshire behind Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.
"I don’t think we’re worried about anyone locking anything up in June or July," said Edwards campaign manager Jonathan Prince in a response to a reporter who asked whether the campaign was worried about Clinton’s strong standing in first in the nation primary state. "We expect it to be a very fluid and dynamic race."
Edwards continues to lead in most Iowa polls. His first campaign ad debuted there in early May.
On the call, Trippi and Prince also argued the campaign is experiencing a "spike" in fundraising donations in the second-quarter.
The campaign has publicly declared their goal is to raise $9 million by June 30th in second quarter fundraising. That is far less that the $14 million Edwards raised in the first three months of the campaign, and much less than Obama and Clinton, who both raised over $25 million in the first quarter.
The Edwards campaign says they have taken in a little over $7 million in the second-quarter and Trippi argued supporters are also opening their wallets in response to recent negative press about the campaign.
Last week The New York times ran a story about Edwards using his poverty center for political publicity. Yesterday, Prince followed up with an email to supporters saying, "Everyone who likes things just the way they are gets scared and goes on the attack. If they can’t attack the substance, they’ll create ‘scandals’ any way they can."
He also criticized The New York Times for not talking to people who benefited from Edwards’ anti-poverty activities.
"We’re in a different era now where supporters of the campaign see a story like that and they chip in 15 dollars to our campaign," Trippi told reporters Tuesday.
The campaign has publicly focusing their fundraising efforts on a series of low-dollar "Small Change for Big Change" events. The campaign argues it is trying to reach out to supporters who can give small donations. This week the campaign has organized fundraising events in Texas, Florida and Kentucky.