[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/03/15/art.kirk.0315.youtube.jpg caption ="Rep. Mark Kirk is out Monday with his first TV ad."]Washington (CNN) - A Republican candidate vying to capture President Obama's old Senate seat released his first political ad of the season Monday.
The 30-second spot highlights Rep. Mark Kirk's record on tax cuts and what his campaign calls, "a thoughtful, independent and effective record of standing up to special interests and party leaders."
Set to run statewide, the ad entitled "Independent" also focuses on Kirk's military service as a naval intelligence officer.
The ad paints Kirk as a centrist, as the candidate seeks to shore up support with independent voters ahead of the general election.
But the ad's narrator also says Kirk will work to "end the corruption in Illinois" as images of current Senator Roland Burris and former Gov. Rod Blagojevich flash on screen.
Kirk's Democratic opponent, Illinois state treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, is not mentioned in the ad. Giannoulias has been the target of frequent attacks in recent weeks as critics attempt to connect him to the struggling Broadway Bank, a firm run by his brothers.
Update 1:45 p.m. ET: The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee on Monday released its own Web video targeting Rep. Kirk. The video will not appear on television, but highlights Kirk's votes on financial regulation reform, and urges viewers to tell, "Mark Kirk to stand up to the big banks."
In a statement, Giannoulias spokeswoman Kathleen Strand refuted claims made in the Kirk ad.
"Congressman Mark Kirk's claim that he is a budget hawk just doesn't fly with his record of supporting all of Bush's reckless budgets that led to the doubling of the national debt and the greatest recession since the Great Depression."