Could Fox swing race for Webb?

Could a Hollywood actor win the Virginia senate race for Jim Webb? That's what some are wondering now that a pair of ads featuring actor and Parkinson's disease sufferer Michael J. Fox advocating for Democratic senate candidates have made a big splash in close senate races in Missouri and Maryland.

Fox's ad for Missouri Democrat Claire McCaskill first began airing Saturday night during Game 1 of the World Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and Detroit Tigers. In it, Fox, visibly shaking from the effects of Parkinson's, tells viewers, "Unfortunately, Senator Jim Talent [R] opposes expanding stem cell research. Senator Talent even wanted to criminalize the science that gives us a chance for hope," before imploring voters, "What you do in Missouri matters to millions of Americans– Americans like me."

Of that ad, UVA professor and political pundit Larry Sabato says, "That's a powerful ad and it's the kind of ad that could tip the balance and win McCaskill the election."

Now, it appears Fox's impact may not be limited to the Show Me State. Today, Maryland congressman and Democratic candidate for senate Ben Cardin unveiled an ad of his own featuring the actor. In that ad, Fox claims "George Bush and [Republican candidate] Michael Steele would put limits on the most promising stem cell research," before concluding, "I support Ben Cardin, and with so much at stake, I respectfully ask you to do the same."

With Republican senator and opponent of government-sponsored embryonic stem cell research George Allen leading Webb by only four points according to the latest Mason-Dixon poll and with nationwide fight for control over the Senate as heated as it is, could it be that the Webb campaign has a Fox ad of its own up its sleeve?



After viewing that ad, I can tell you that it is POWERFUL.

The negative ads from both sides are not going to help turn out. It seems that the Webb isn't advancing or closing the gap. One ad from Michael J. Fox won't tip the balance, He a fine actor but his connection to Virginia is limited.

I would think that the only endorsement ad that might make a difference is one for Allen from John Warner and another for Webb by Mark Warner. Tricky business to be sure but each could help out their party.