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President Clinton's re-election campaignhas launched a $2.4 million series of television ads designed to portray the President as tough on crime. The slickly produced spots feature police officers praising the ban on assault weapons: "President Clinton is helping us make this a safer nation." Why so early?TIME White House correspondent James Carneysays: "There are two ways to look at this. One is that it's an absurd amount of money to be spending on political ads sixteen months before the election. But Clinton isn't facing any primary challenge, and he's raised $8 million already. He thinks these ads will bolster his image while the Republican challengers fight among themselves."