Rick Perry has released his first TV ad in Iowa with a concrete promise: as president, he will create at least 2.5 million jobs.

Perry is attempting to revive his once-dominant campaign by returning to the strongest point on his record: the creation of more than a million new jobs in Texas under his governorship.

As president I'll create at least two-and-a-half million new jobs, and I know something about that, he says in the new ad, which cost $175,000 and will air in Des Moines, Cedar Rapids and Sioux City. In Texas, we've created over one million new jobs while the rest of the nation lost over two million.

Perry As A Jobs Guy

Ray Sullivan, the communications director for Perry's campaign, said the ad underscores Rick Perry's commitment to sparking millions of new jobs and his record as America's jobs governor.

The message is that, if elected, Perry would become America's jobs president by easing regulations on oil drilling and other types of energy exploration, while simultaneously reduc[ing] our reliance on oil from countries that hate America.

The campaign's choice to air a positive ad touting Perry's record rather than a negative one attacking his opponents shows a growing understanding that Perry really is a long-shot candidate.

He can no longer rely on a strategy of trashing his opponents and questioning Mitt Romney's conservatism. This is because, in addition to falling from the top of the polls, he has lost even his place as a default alternative if other candidates falter.

If Perry wants to pull himself out of the single digits in opinion polls, he will have to give voters tangible reasons to support him, and he is clearly hoping that his state's job-creation record will be such a reason. If that record can carry him to wins or at least respectable showings in the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primaries, he could put himself back in the race.