Democratic Senate candidate Rep. Tim Ryan’s (D-Oh.) campaign rolled out a new football-themed digital ad on Saturday mocking Republican Senate candidate J.D. Vance ahead of his rally with former President Trump, which is set to take place during Ohio State University’s game against the University of Toledo.
The ad, which is a part of a six-figure ad buy on Facebook and Instagram, shows what it refers to as “Silicon Valley J.D.” going up against “Politician J.D.” in an effort to paint the Republican candidate as out of touch.
The 30-second digital spot comes ahead of the college football game and Trump’s rally with Vance in Youngstown, which are both set to take place at 7 p.m. on Saturday evening. Ryan and Ohio Democrats have been hitting Vance and Trump for holding the rally during the game.
“Dude just doesn’t get it,” Ryan tweeted earlier this month along with screenshots of the timing of both events.
Football games, particularly Ohio State games, are a mainstay in the Buckeye State. According to the Columbus Dispatch, a record-breaking 10.5 million tuned into Ohio State’s game against the University of Notre Dame earlier this month.
But while Saturday’s game may stand to get more viewership than Trump’s rally for Vance and down-ballot Ohio Republicans, the rally still stands to further boost Vance ahead of Election Day. Trump won the Buckeye State twice by eight points in 2016 and 2020. Earlier this year he endorsed Vance in the state’s GOP Senate primary, helping propel him to victory in the intraparty contest.
The rally is set to take place in Youngstown, which is a part of Ryan’s own district, but still has a sizable number of Trump supporters.
Polls show a tight race between Vance and Ryan, with the Republican holding a slight lead. A survey from Emerson College and The Hill released on Friday showed Vance leading Ryan 44 percent to 40 percent. Thirteen percent of voters said they were undecided, while 3 percent said they planned to vote for someone else. Meanwhile, a USA Today/Suffolk University poll released earlier this week showed Ryan leading Vance 46.6 percent to 45.6 percent. The Real Clear Politics polling average shows Vance leading by 2.7 points and the non-partisan Cook Political Report rates the race as “lean Republican.”