Well the Doc opened up the old mailbag today and here’s what poured out.
Dear Dr. Ads,
There I was, minding my own business and reading the Weekend Wall Street Journal, when I came across this item in John McCormick’s piece about the $7.5 billion being spent nationally on 2022 midterm campaign ads.
The Las Vegas market has had the heaviest advertising since Labor Day. Nevada is home to competitive races for governor and both chambers of Congress. Philadelphia, a top market in a state with open-seat races for Senate and governor, saw the second-most spots. Boston, in third place, covers parts of New Hampshire, where there are competitive House and Senate races.
What the hell, Doc – is it right that the good people of Boston should get dragged into the Granite State’s sadstravaganza?
– Campaign Addled
It’s not right, it’s politics.
Here’s the tally of campaign ads on broadcast and cable TV through October 17, according to AdImpact.
More to the point, the New Hampshire Senate race between incumbent Democrat Maggie Hassan and challenger Don Bolduc (R-Gen. Strangelove) has produced almost $50 million in ad spending overall.
But here’s the difference: According to this Journal graphic on the share of negative ads aired, the Democrats are largely less combative overall than the smashmouth GOP.
That seems especially true in the Hassan-Bolduc race, given this YouTube compilation of Hassan’s recent ads, only one of which attacks Bolduc.
Hassan’s own YouTube channel doesn’t even include that spot, so she’s not exactly Maggie-fying Bolduc’s negatives.
As for Gen. Strangelove, he launched this TV spot – the first from his campaign – in early October
Check out this chart, though, from McCormick’s WSJ piece detailing what “candidates and their allies” spent on TV ads from Labor Day through October 18.
That twenty-something million virtually all came from two Republican party groups – Senate Leadership Fund, a super PAC aligned with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee (representative samples here and here) – both of which, according to this piece by New York Times reporters Shane Goldmacher and have cancelled millions more in New Hampshire ad buys
The SLF had planned to spend $23 million on the Bolduc-Hassan bakeoff, but seems to have drawn the line at $18 million. Still, that’s throwing a lot of good money after a bad candidate.
Then again, at least Boston TV viewers will be spared five million more dollars of attacks on Hassan by McConnell’s wet workers. Be thankful for small favors, yeah?