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NASHVILLE - Tennessee Republicans have a greeting of their own for Democratic President Barack Obama's visit to Chattanooga on Tuesday with an ad touting strides the GOP says Tennessee has made with Republican leadership.
"Welcome to Chattanooga, Mr. President - welcome to America," says the ad, which the state Republican Party says it plans to run on local television stations. "We're succeeding in Tennessee, not because of your liberal policies but in spite of them."
State Republican Party Executive Director Brent Leatherwood said the GOP plans to air the ad beginning Monday. He provided no figures on how much Republicans plan to spend on running the ad.
With a visual background of Tennessee images including an aerial shot of the Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, the ad says Tennessee was fourth in job creation among states, in the top five for business and the third "freest" state in the country "thanks to Republican leadership," a narrator says.
"We're a right-to-work state relying on the hard work of individuals, not unions," the narrator continues. "Unlike Washington, we've got the lowest debt of any state in the nation.
"Maybe you can learn a thing or two while you're here, Mr. President," the narrator concludes with a shot of downtown Chattanooga with Lookout Mountain in the background. "This is what America should look like."
Chattanooga landed the Volkswagen plant five years ago in a collaborative effort between then-Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen and then-Hamilton County Mayor Claude Ramsey, a Republican, with both state, county and city putting up substantial cash and tax incentives.
Obama is scheduled to speak Tuesday at Amazon's giant distribution center in Chattanooga.