This new ad from Arkansas GOP senate candidate Tom Cotton is basically 2014's version of the infamous Jesse Helms 'Hands' ad:
Voiceover: You've worked hard, every day, all your life. You've paid into Social Security, counted on it being there. But liberals in Washington want to let illegal immigrants get Social Security for work they did with forged identities. And when they needed one vote, they got it—from Senator Mark Pryor. On illegal immigration, Mark Pryor never takes your side.There are a million things wrong with this ad, starting with its blatant immigrant bashing, which Cotton obviously hopes will win the day for him. But it's worth noting that despite its emotionally-charged appeal to nativism, even the ad itself concedes that the issue is whether immigrants who achieve legal status should receive credit for Social Security taxes that they paid while working without legal documents. When you think about it like that, it completely turns the issue around, because it's hard to make the case that it's fair to deny Social Security benefits to somebody who has paid Social Security taxes.
Not only that, but most immigrants are young, and come to the U.S. to work. And when they work, they pay Social Security taxes, which strengthens Social Security since it's a pay-as-you-go system. So instead of being freaked out about brown people, the people in Cotton's ad should be pretty eager to get more workers to support their retirement.
Finally, it takes some serious chutzpah for Cotton to accuse Pryor of being the guy who wants to weaken Social Security given that even so-called fact checkers acknowledge that Cotton has voted to cut Social Security and raise the retirement age. Cotton doesn't want to talk about those votes, so instead of defending them, he's trying to change the subject by using the oldest page in the GOP playback: Taking aiming at minorities.