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Clinton ad assails her Republican assailants

Hillary Rodham Clinton is pointing to her GOP critics as evidence of her own political strength in a new television ad that was to begin airing in New Hampshire Tuesday.
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Hillary Rodham Clinton makes her case to the Clark County Democratic Party Jefferson Jackson Dinner in Las Vegas last Thursday.Jae C. Hong / AP
/ Source: The Associated Press

Democratic presidential contender Hillary Rodham Clinton is pointing to her Republican critics as a sign of her own political strength in a new television ad that was to begin airing in New Hampshire on Tuesday.

The 30-second ad, titled "Machine" begins with a screen showing brief cuts of anti-Clinton ads from Republican rivals John McCain and Mitt Romney. The clips play under the title "The Republican Attack Machine" and end with shots of McCain and Romney's faces.

"Here they go again — the same old Republican attack machine is back. Why?" an announcer says.

"Maybe it's because they know that there's one candidate with the strength and experience to get us out of Iraq," the announcer continues. "The strength to fight, the experience to lead."

GOP contenders use Clinton as target
The ad airs as Republicans increasingly have been using Clinton as a political foil. Republican Rudy Giuliani joked at her expense Friday in a speech before the Federalist Society, a conservative legal group.

In a speech in New Hampshire on Sunday, McCain cast himself as the Republican best able to defeat Clinton in a general election.

Romney has run ads in New Hampshire saying Clinton has no experience as an executive and compares her White House years as first lady to that of an intern.

McCain has run ads in New Hampshire criticizing Clinton's attempt to spend $1 million for a Woodstock museum in Bethel, N.Y., to commemorate the 1969 rock festival.

The Clinton camp is running a different ad in Iowa that features a testimonial from a father whose son received a bone marrow transplant after he said her Senate office intervened and helped. "I trusted this woman to save my son's life. And she did," the father says.

Polls show three-way tie in Iowa
The two ads underscore the different challenges facing Clinton in each state. In Iowa, where she is in a virtual three-way tie with Democrats Barack Obama and John Edwards, a recent New York Times poll showed that nearly half of voters believe she has a tendency to say what people want to hear rather than what she believes.

In New Hampshire, where she leads Obama by double digits, voters are more likely to believe she is being sincere, the poll found. By drawing a contrast with Republicans, Clinton's latest ad may also resonate with independent voters, who can vote in New Hampshire's primary.

Romney's campaign accused Clinton of engaging in partisanship.

"Senator Clinton has shown us time and time again that she is more interested in political posturing than any core principles," Romney spokesman Kevin madden said.

The Republican national committee also weighed in.

"Senator Clinton has spent her entire career blaming her problems on her political opponents," spokesman Danny Diaz said. "The only things that are the 'same' and 'old' are Hillary Clinton's excuses."