Bracing for a multi-front battle in 2015, Mayor Rahm Emanuel is launching a series of TV spots highlighting various efforts over his first term. The ads target neighborhoods in Chicago and aim to craft an image of Emanuel as a leader who can make things happen.
In one spot, a mother of an asthmatic boy living in Little Village credits Emanuel with improving air quality by closing coal power plants.
Emanuel’s campaign also launched a new web site: http://www.chicagotogether.org where Emanuel boasts that “Rahm’s initiatives have contributed to a record-high graduation rate of 69.4 percent for the last school year, up from 58.3 percent in 2011.”
The TV ads aim to soften Emanuel’s image as a take-it-or-leave-it mayor who makes unpopular decisions — like the closing of 50 schools– without regard to community impact.
According to the new ad order, the campaign, working through AKPD Media, is buying a flight to run Wednesday through Nov. 23 throughout Chicago markets and through various cable networks. Longtime Democratic strategist David Axelrod founded AKPD.
A source with knowledge of the purchase said the ad buy was worth upward of $500,000.
The news comes one day after petition filings began in what’s expected to be a highly contested contest for Chicago mayor. Already, Ald. Bob Fiorett (2nd) and Jesus “Chuy” Garcia have announced their candidacies, not to mention a host of other possible contenders.
Transcript of the new ad:
“When I had my firstborn son, he had his first asthma attack. We realized that it wasn’t just us. There was a lot of people affected in Pilsen and in Little Village by air quality issues. And we recognized that these coal power plants were having an impact on our community. The message was falling on deaf ears. It was literally 10 years of fighting. I think Rahm comes at a lot of these issues being able to have the tough conversations. He said, ‘If the right thing to do is to shut them down, then that is what I will do.’ And that’s exactly what he did. That’s the kind of leadership that our communities need.”
The mayor is preparing to air a series of TV spots that will highlight what he sees as his greatest achievements over the last four years.
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“The Emanuel campaign will begin airing a new television ad featuring a Pilsen community activist who was among the leaders of a longtime fight to close two coal plants believed to cause asthma,” said Emanuel campaign spokesman Steve Mayberry. “This is one of a series of ads where Chicagoans will share their stories on a range of important city issues.”