Ad War Update: Todd Achin’

Andrew Sullivan —  Oct 10 2012 @ 7:16pm

The Romney campaign is highlighting his debate performance with two new ads (buy size/scope unknown). The first:

The other, near-identical ad is here. Notice how they take advantage of the visual gift Obama offered by looking down at the podium so much. It's also worth noting that the Romney campaign appears to have stopped indicating where their ads will air or how much they will put behind them. That being said, Politico has a big story up today about the campaign's peculiar ad-buying operation:

Unlike other presidential campaigns, which typically outsource their ad reservations and placement to specialized firms with large teams that know how to make the most of the complicated FCC payment procedures, Romney does all his TV buying in-house through a lean operation headed by a single chief buyer. The campaign rarely buys cable ad time, focusing overwhelmingly on broadcast television. Romney places his commercials on a week-to-week basis, rather than booking time well in advance, and typically pays more so that his ads don’t get preempted and to spare his campaign the hassle of haggling over time as prices rise.

According the Politico's digging, the strategy seems to mean the Romney campaign has been far overpaying for its ads. Meanwhile, the RNC gets in the Halloween mood for this new web video showing Biden as a tax bogeyman:

The full quote from Biden is much less ominous, of course:

You know what they say? ‘Obama and Biden want to raise taxes by $1 trillion.’ Guest What? Yes we do, in one regard. We want to let that trillion dollar tax cut expire so the middle class doesn’t have to bear the burden of all that money going to the super wealthy. That’s not a tax rate hike. That’s called fairness where I come from.

From the other side of the trail, the Obama campaign gets flashy in this youth-focused web ad that uses Romney's Harvard degrees against him (ad buy size/scope unknown):

Meanwhile, in Missouri, Claire McCaskill is hammering Todd Akin over his "legitimate rape" comment with not one but three brutal ads featuring testimonials from survivors of sexual assault:

An extended version of that ad here. Two others from different women here and here. In the world of outside spending, Rove's American Crossroads will spend $7.4 million to air the following spot in Colorado, Florida, North Carolina and Ohio:

And a new outside spender has entered the race: billionaire Thomas Peterffy, who is spending his own money to decry what he sees as America's drift into socialism:

Ashley Killough explains the buy:

Peterffy told CNN he expects to spend $5-$10 million on the ad buy, depending on its effectiveness. The spot will run on CNN, CNBC, Bloomberg, and test markets in Ohio, Wisconsin, and possibly Florida. The one-minute spot, which began airing Wednesday and will continue through Election Day, has no mention of any specific politician or lawmaker.

Also, GOP dark money group American Future Fund uploaded a new ad (buy size/scope unknown) trying to chip away at Obama's auto industry heroics (it seems to inspired by a debunked email rumor about GM becoming "China Motors"). It's a subject AFF has already used for mailers. Lastly, in issue campaign news, here's a new ad supporting marijuana legalization in Washington (part of a $450K two-ad buy):

Ad War archive here.