[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/05/18/art.maccaullife.gi.jpg caption="McAuliffe supported Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential primary campaign."](CNN) - Virginia gubernatorial candidate Brian Moran is hammering his Democratic primary rival Terry McAuliffe for backing Hillary Clinton instead of Barack Obama throughout much of the presidential race.
The Moran campaign is hoping a new 60-second radio ad running on black radio stations in Virginia will remind African-American voters - likely to be a crucial voting block in the June 9 Democratic primary - of McAuliffe's full-throated support for Clinton and his past criticisms of Obama.
"Terry McAuliffe may have a lot of big money for his campaign, but don't let that hide the truth," the ad's narrator says. "The truth is, Terry McAuliffe led the campaign that ran the '3 a.m.' attack ad against Barack Obama. McAuliffe worked to put up the ads that questioned Obama's ability to be president."
The new attack is especially pointed because McAuliffe has gone to great lengths to model elements of his gubernatorial campaign after Obama's, which won Virginia in both the Democratic primary and the general election. In March, McAuliffe's campaign ran an ad on black radio stations proclaiming: "In 2008, our voices were heard when we elected our president, Barack Obama."
But Moran's new ad claims that, "if Terry McAuliffe had his way, Barack Obama wouldn't be our president today." Referring to a light-hearted appearance by McAuliffe on The Daily Show last June, the ad says that "McAuliffe even went on national TV and joked Barack Obama could, quote, 'kiss my ass.'"
The McAuliffe campaign called the ad "false and misleading" and accused Moran of "trying to divide Democrats again, especially at a time when we all need to come together to help President Obama get the economy back on track." The campaign said McAuliffe "fought tirelessly" for Obama after the primaries ended.
Moran and McAuliffe are competing against Creigh Deeds for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination. The winner of that contest will face Republican Bob McDonnell in the general election.
UPDATE: The McAuliffe campaign responded again Monday by rolling out the endorsement of Tom Daschle, who co-chaired Obama's campaign.
"From the day Hillary Clinton ended her historic bid for president, Terry worked tirelessly to unify our party around Barack Obama and get him elected President," Daschle said in a statement. "His energy and enthusiasm were tremendous assets on the campaign trail and we were grateful to have him on our side."