WASHINGTON – The 2002 mid-term national elections set new national records for political campaign outreach to the nation’s growing population of Hispanic voters, according to a major post-election report by Adam Segal, Director of the Hispanic Voter Project at Johns Hopkins University. More than $16 million was spent by gubernatorial, Senate, House, and down-ballot candidates on Spanish-language broadcast television advertising this year, according to the report.
Gubernatorial, Senate, and House candidates aired more than 16,000 spots. More candidates than ever before – three times the number in past elections – aired Spanish-language broadcast television ads inclusive of states that had never before seen wide-scale Hispanic outreach efforts.
RECORD NUMBER OF CANDIDATES USING SPANISH-LANGUAGE ADS
This year at least 20 gubernatorial candidates, six Senate candidates, more than a dozen House candidates, and dozens more down-ballot candidates (including a handful of candidates for Lieutenant Governor and Attorney General) and proponents and opponents of ballot initiatives across the nation utilized Spanish-language television advertising to reach Hispanic voters.
Local station managers and national executives all report that a record number of candidates aired Spanish-language ads this year. By most accounts, three times as many candidates nationally ran Spanish-language television ads than in any previous election year, demonstrating growing confidence across the nation in the use of Spanish-language television as an effective tool to reach Hispanic voters.
In 2001, more than 24 candidates ran Spanish-language television ads including numerous mayoral candidates and two successful Democratic gubernatorial candidates, Jim McGreevey (NJ) and Mark Warner (VA). In 2000, more than 26 candidates ran Spanish-language television ads including three presidential candidates (Bush, Gore, and Bradley), eight Senate candidates, and a handful of House and down-ballot candidates.
GROWING MILLION-DOLLAR CLUB
Five candidates spent more than $1 million each on Spanish-language television ads this year, a record itself. New York Independent Gubernatorial Candidate Tom Golisano spent at least $2.4 million, the Florida Republican Party and Republican Governor Jeb Bush spent at least $1.8 million, Texas Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Tony Sanchez spent at least $1.8 million, California Democratic Governor Gray Davis spent at least $1.7 million, and New York Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Carl McCall spent at least $1 million. Republican New York Governor George Pataki came close, spending over $825,000 on Spanish-language broadcast television.
Segal’s report was developed through interviews and data obtained in conjunction with the Wisconsin Advertising Project, a study funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts, and the Campaign Media Analysis Group (CMAG).
CMAG monitors all political and issue advertising in the nation’s top 100 media markets, including Spanish-language stations – covering 85 percent of the country’s population – and provides cost estimates and information on the content, volume and targeting of media buys. CMAG does not monitor most advertising placed on local cable systems or local broadcast stations outside of the nation’s 100 biggest media markets. Spanish-language ads aired on these stations and local cable systems may not be included in this data. This report includes all spending on Spanish-language television advertising through Election Day. A more detailed report by Segal is forthcoming on the 2000 Spanish-language presidential campaign advertising aimed at Hispanic voters and the strategies behind the ads.
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