"Personal," which focuses on Medicare, is a clear appeal to senior citizens, one of the largest and most consistent voter blocs. The ad's claims about Obama's record on Medicare are true, although it ignores changes to the program that occurred under Obama. Medicare was cut by about 6 percent as part of Obama's overhaul of the health care system. The administration has said the cuts trimmed waste.
By positioning himself as a protector of Medicare, Obama is also framing an election fight he's likely to have with Romney, who has expressed support for a budget blueprint passed by House Republicans that includes significant cuts and changes to Medicare and Medicaid.
"Sacred Trust" highlights the administration's efforts to help veterans. Its specific claims are true, but lack context.
Money for returning veterans has increased under Obama along with training help, as the ad claims. But the unemployment rate among those who served in the military since 2001 is higher than the overall jobless rate _ 9.2 percent, compared to 8.1 percent overall.
"Sacred Trust" also is notable because it makes reference to the military operation that killed Osama bin Laden. Obama is likely to continue reminding voters about that success before the Nov. 6 election. In this case, he's doing so in an ad that's not otherwise touting his national security credentials.
Together, the two ads show that Obama recognizes he'll have to make a positive case for himself if he's going to win a second term.