You can't see Missouri politician Jason Kander's eyes at the start of his new TV commercial for a very good reason: He's blindfolded. "I'm Jason Kander," he says while standing behind a wooden table in an empty warehouse. "Senator [Roy] Blunt has been attacking me on guns." Still blindfolded, he begins to calmly, systematically assemble an AR-15 assault rifle. "Well, in the Army, I learned how to use and respect my rifle. In Afghanistan, I volunteered to be an extra gun in a convoy of unarmored SUVs. And in the state legislature, I supported Second Amendment rights." The nearly assembled rifle clanks against the table top as he adds, "I also believe in background checks, so that terrorists can't get their hands on one of these."
And then Kander, a Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate, stands the AR-15 up, causing it to loudly clunk again the table. "I approve this message," he says, while removing his blindfold and finally making eye contact with us, "because I'd like to see Senator Blunt do this."
What's the political term for what he just pulled off in this ad? Oh yeah: touché.
Simon Dumenco, aka Media Guy, is an Ad Age editor-at-large. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.