Columbia, South Carolina (CNN) – Despite pressure from national Republicans, Gresham Barrett vowed Wednesday to remain in the runoff race against Nikki Haley for South Carolina's GOP gubernatorial nomination.
"We are in it for the long haul," Barrett told reporters at his campaign headquarters when asked if would drop out of the race.
Barrett made good on that promise Wednesday by releasing the first television ad of the runoff race – a follow-up to the well-received "Drill Sergeant" commercial that helped drive up Barrett's poll numbers in the final weeks of the race.
In the 30-second spot, titled "Shake Up Columbia," a drill sergeant walks alongside Barrett asking him a series of questions about how he plans to do business in the state capital if elected.
"Will you shake up Columbia?," the drill sergeant asks.
"Absolutely," Barrett responds.
The drill sergeant calls Barrett a "Christian family man who won't embarrass us" – a reference to the state's scandal-tainted governor, Mark Sanford.
Haley has the backing of Sanford's political allies and donors, and Barrett suggested earlier in the day that he will make an issue out of Haley's ties to the governor by describing her as "the Sanford candidate" in his remarks to reporters.
Barrett's campaign told CNN the ad will run in every television market in the state.