With the election just about a month away, Hillary Clinton’s campaign is shifting to its closing argument against Donald Trump — that he simply can’t be trusted with nuclear weapons.
A new Clinton campaign ad features Bruce Blair, a former nuclear missile launch officer, explaining that "if the president gave the order, we had to launch the missiles" and that "self-control may be all that keeps these missiles from firing."
The ad then plays several clips from Donald Trump’s campaign rallies and interviews, in which he says, "I would bomb the shit out of ’em," "I wanna be unpredictable," and "I love war." Here’s the ad, which is named "Silo":
"The thought of Donald Trump with nuclear weapons scares me to death. It should scare everyone," Blair concludes.
This is quite a change of pace from Clinton’s recent ads, many of which have focused on offensive statements Trump has made. But it’s long been clear that she’d save her strongest attacks on Trump for the campaign’s end.
Furthermore, Clinton telegraphed that she’d be going here eventually back during her Democratic convention speech, when she said, "A man you can bait with a tweet is not a man we can trust with nuclear weapons."
The ad is already drawing comparisons to Lyndon B. Johnson’s infamous "Daisy" attack ad against Barry Goldwater during the 1964 campaign:
The difference here is that, unlike the "Daisy" ad, "Silo" actually plays statements Trump has made to make the connection even more explicitly.
The "I love war" statement from Trump especially will get some attention. He made this remark during a campaign rally in Iowa in November of last year, though his full sentence was "I love war, in a certain way" — here’s the context, via PolitiFact:
"But I'm good at war. I've had a lot of wars of my own. I'm really good at war. I love war, in a certain way. But only when we win."
Trump has attempted to rebut these criticisms of his temperament in the past by claiming that it is in fact Clinton who is "trigger-happy and very unstable." But that may be a difficult case to make when Trump has just finished responding to a debate loss by spending several days feuding with a former Miss Universe.