(CNN) - Barack Obama's campaign released a new television ad in North Carolina and Indiana Sunday that calls rival Hillary Clinton's proposal for a suspension of the gas tax a "bogus gimmick."
The ad is a response to a recent Clinton commercial that criticizes Obama for not supporting the proposal.
"More “low road” attacks from Hillary Clinton," the ad's announcer states. "Now she’s pushing a “bogus” gas tax gimmick…Experts say it’ll just “boost oil industry profits.”
The Clinton campaign quickly fired back in a conference call with reporters, saying Obama is "siding with the oil companies" and his stance on the issue is a key reason why he has difficulties winning over working class voters.
"That’s a critical distinction in this race between, in Senator Clinton, someone who understands the pain that middle class and working class families are feeling...and Senator Obama, somebody who just doesn’t seem to understand that middle class families are hurting, working class families are hurting and that they need relief," Clinton Communications Director Howard Wolfson said.
The campaign is also taking issue with one of the ad's quotes from the New York Times saying Obama's proposal would "boost oil industry profits." Clinton spokesman Phil Singer says that quote pertained to John McCain's proposal for the suspension of the gas tax, not Hillary Clinton's.
Obama supporter and Missouri Senator Clair McCaskill also held a conference call on the gas tax plan Sunday afternoon, during which she characterized Clinton's plan as a "political trick."
Sunday's back-and-forth is the latest on the issue that has come to dominate the Democratic presidential race over the last week as gas prices continue to set record highs.
(Full script after jump)
Announcer: More “low road” attacks from Hillary Clinton…Now she’s pushing a “bogus” gas tax gimmick…Experts say it’ll just “boost oil industry profits” ….they’ll “simply raise prices and pocket… the difference.” Clinton aides admit it won’t do much for you – but would help her politically. So here’s the choice…Clinton gimmicks that help big oil…Or Barack Obama… a real energy plan and a $1000 middle class tax cut to help families truly pay the bills.