Obama and Romney open tonight’s 2012 CMT Music Awards

‘Tis the season for political pandering! On Sunday night, the Barack Obama campaign debuted a commercial during the MTV Movie Awards, probably to attract the attention of young voters, and tonight, the Democratic incumbent and his competitor for the presidency, Republican Mitt Romney, both seem to be aiming for mainly Red State audiences.

The two political rivals will appear in a pre-taped comedic opening segment of the 2012 CMT Music Awards, hosted by Toby Keith and Kristen Bell. The awards air live tonight, June 6, at 8pm ET on CMT and CMT.com.

“The President and Gov. Romney each understand the reach of the CMT audience, particularly on our highest-rated night of the year,” says Brian Philips, president of CMT. “They’re each great sports, they’re ‘in on the joke,’ and they each went out of their way to deliver great moments for CMT. Tune in at the top of the show or you’ll miss them!”

In addition to the political starpower at tonight’s ceremony, the event will include performances by Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Eric Church, Toby Keith, Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town, Willie Nelson, Brad Paisley, Pistol Annies, Rascal Flatts, Darius Rucker, The Band Perry, Carrie Underwood, Hank Williams Jr. (who likely won’t be watching the opening video from “Obama!”) and Zac Brown Band.

Presenters will include Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Ronnie Dunn, Sara Evans, Alan Jackson, Jake Owen, Kellie Pickler, The Band Perry, Carrie Underwood, Tom Arnold, Steve Austin, Colton Dixon, Skylar Laine, Dario Franchitti, Ashley Greene, Tony Hawk, Denise Richards, Dax Shepard and Jordin Sparks.