It is not the easiest argument for the Obama team, but it is an issue that they are trying to take away from their opponents. Debt and deficits are a problem plaguing Washington and it is one Republicans have worked hard to tack on to the president's record.
The numbers are black and white. The federal debt has gone up $4.5 trillion dollars since Obama took office. It is a massive figure that has allowed a third party group to attack the president, accusing him of racking up $4 billion in debt every single day he has been in office.
The ad, paid for by the Karl Rove backed Crossroads GPS, was ruled "half true" by PolitiFact.
To counter the assault the Obama campaign is ready to go forward with an ad that argues that he has the best plan to reign the growing debt under control.
Take a look:
The ad argues that in his second term, President Obama will work to create a "balanced" approach to the debt problem. Mixing targeting spending cuts with tax hikes on the rich and closing loopholes and subsides for oil companies and other corporations.
His opponents argue that it is a little late to start talking about deficit reduction. Obama called President George W. Bush's ramping up of the debt "unpatriotic".
"He just can't seem to get things done right," said Curt Cashour a Romney Spokesman. "He focused on health care instead of the economy, he hasn’t been able to pass a budget through Congress, he hasn’t cut the deficit like he promised and he’s done nothing to change the way Washington works."
It is not a new fight. In fact it is one the president has been pushing since the GOP took control of the House of Representatives. He has sent numerous proposals to hike taxes on the wealthy, all have gone nowhere because of the GOP power in the congress.
The Romney campaign argues that Obama's attempts to push tax cuts simply divides the nation and could stifle the economy.
"Mitt Romney has the pro-growth economic plan that will lower taxes across the board, reduce spending, and create jobs,” Cashour said.
But the Obama campaign argues that his plan will start to cut $4 trillion from the deficit right away. An ambitious plan that many have promised, but few have delivered upon.
Keep in mind, the "debt" won't begin to be cut until the "deficit", the amount year to year the government spends more than they take in, turns into a surplus. Right now the federal deficit is averaging a little more than $1 trillion a year. The goal would be to cut $4 trillion in deficit over 10 years.
At this point even the most optimistic deficit and debt reduction plans, from republicans and democrats, only hope to slow down the rate of debt growth. Starting to actually cut the debt is not even part of the discussion.
It is a complex issue that very few voters even begin to grasp the very basics of. Both sides are hoping their creatively crafted 30 second spots will do the best job of convincing those voters they have the best plan.