CHEAP SHOTS IN GEORGIA…. The polls must be pretty close in Georgia’s runoff election for the U.S. Senate, because the right, true to form, is aiming pretty low.

Over the last few days, both the National Republican Senatorial Committee and a far-right group called Freedom’s Watch have both launched ads attacking Democrat Jim Martin for being “soft on crime.” More specifically, the conservatives insist that Martin has opposed measures that would crack down on criminals who prey on children.

Of all the issues Republicans could have picked, this has to be the most offensive — Martin’s daughter was kidnapped when she was just eight years old. She was, fortunately, returned to the family safely, but Martin has a more personal background when it comes to crimes against children than most of us would even care to imagine.

With that in mind, the Martin campaign released this ad and a fact-sheet documenting Martin’s extensive record on penalties for criminals and protections for children.

One wonders if, perhaps, the right-wing attacks on this go a little too far, and might backfire, just as the Liddy Dole “godless” ad had the opposite of the desired effect in North Carolina earlier this month.

Then again, there is a track record to consider. Saxby Chambliss won a first term with an offensive ad smearing Max Cleland on national security; perhaps he’ll win a second term thanks to a couple of offensive ads about crime.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.