News Column

Heavy GOP Ad Spending Hasn't Knocked Obama

Oct 29, 2012

Despite the Romney campaign spending more money on broadcast commercials, the campaign for President Obama is holding its own, an analysis of ad spending finds.

Obama forces have run more ads in the past month and reached approximately the same number of voters as Mitt Romney, whose advertising campaign is heavily underwritten by conservative super PACS, The New York Times reported Sunday.

Data from political ad tracker Kantar Media/CMAG shows that 160,000 commercials supporting the president have run compared to 140,000 for Romany. More Obama ads are being run during the morning news and prime time.

The Romney campaign and its unaffiliated backers have spent $500 million on ads, $100 million more than the Obama backers. However, that money advantage hasn't translated into greater support.

The advantages for the Obama campaign are embedded in federal campaign finance law. More than half the ad spending by the Romney campaign has come from super PACs, which pay two to three times what the candidates' own campaigns pay. And much of the money Romney had raised has gone to the Republican National Committee, not to his campaign, making it more disjointed.

On the other hand, much of Obama's fundraising has come in small donations, which has gone directly into his campaign coffers. He can buy ad time at substantially lower rates and control almost all of the ad placement and its timing.

Source: Copyright United Press International 2012

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