The Democratic National Committee launched its first advertisement of the presidential election on Friday, a Spanish-language television spot that signals both parties see Latinos as potential kingmakers in 2012.

The DNC launch followed the Monday airing of an ad in Spanish by American Crossroads, a Republican group not subject to campaign-finance limitations, featuring a narrator expressing disappointment in President Barack Obama.

The DNC ad was anchored to the message: “We know who to trust, and who we can’t.”

The ads are running head to head in Reno and Las Vegas, Nev.; Tampa, Orlando and Miami, Fla.; Denver; Albuquerque, N.M.; and Washington, D.C. They target Latino communities that were critical for Mr. Obama in 2008.

The Obama re-election campaign is counting on larger Hispanic populations in these places next year to compensate for erosion of support for the president among white voters.

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