(CNN) – Nebraska airwaves are about to get a lot more political. On Tuesday, former Sen. Bob Kerrey announced he was launching two television spots promoting his U.S. Senate bid, the same day the conservative group American Crossroads said it was buying radio time to slam the Democratic candidate.
Kerrey's campaign ads, each 30 seconds long, are positive spots giving voters a picture of Kerrey's campaign platform. In "Step Up," the candidate says: "America needs to step up its game. Our government is dysfunctional, our schools are not performing at world standards, our competitors are stealing our technology and our debt is crippling our future."
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In his spot, Kerrey tells voters "It's good to be back."
Kerrey served as a senator from Nebraska for over a decade, and announced he was running for the seat in late February. Republican candidate Jon Bruning, Nebraska's attorney general, went up with a negative television spot almost as soon as Kerrey got into the race, labeling Kerrey a "New York Liberal."
On Tuesday, the independent conservative group American Crossroads said they were spending nearly $80,000 to air negative radio spots against Kerrey in Nebraska. The ads hones in on a so-called "backroom deal" between Democrats and Kerrey to get into the Nebraska race. Reports initially suggested Kerrey was hesitant to jump into the race.
The ad begins by comparing Kerrey to outgoing Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson.
"Hasn't Nebraska been embarrassed enough?" the Crossroads ad asks. "First Ben Nelson embarrassed us with his "cornhusker kickback," trading favors to vote for Obamacare. Now it's Bob Kerrey who's embarrassing us. Kerrey's already cut his own secret deal with Democratic leaders in Washington, a deal so secret Kerrey won't talk about what promises were made."
The ad also takes a dig at the candidate for moving to New York following his tenure as a Nebraska senator, suggesting his residence in an east coast metropolis had changed his political views. Kerrey was the president of The New School in New York from 2001-2011.
The ad runs a clip of Kerrey saying, "It isn't just because I live in Greenwich Village now. The longer I live here the further to the left I get on health care."
In a statement, American Crossroads said Kerrey had changed during his time in New York.
"Secret backroom deals might be the way Bob Kerrey got things done during his decade in New York City, but it's not what Nebraskans expect," Nate Hodson, American Crossroads director of state and regional media relations, said in a statement. "A decade in Greenwich Village changed Bob Kerrey, whether it's his willingness to cut under-the-table deals with Harry Reid or support Obamacare. Nebraskans expect better – just like they did from Ben Nelson."
Kerrey's second television ad, "Welcome Home," attempts to refute the charge that he is no longer a true Nebraskan. The spot features interviews with voters saying things like "You can never take the Nebraska out of a Nebraskan" and "He started his first business here, and he still has businesses here."
The ad also points out that Kerrey is a former Navy SEAL.
Representatives for Kerrey's campaign did not respond when asked about the amount of the ad buy.