Ad War Update: The Romney 100

Andrew Sullivan —  Nov 2 2012 @ 8:12pm

Today the Obama campaign put out a clever faux-newscast imagining what the first hundred days of a Romney administration would be like:

The Obama campaign is also pushing back on Romney’s Spanish dictator ad by featuring a testimonial from former Miami Mayor Manny Diaz (translation currently unavailable, but you’ll get the idea):

Zooming out for a moment, Obama is still out-advertising Romney:

Kantar Media’s CMAG, counting every presidential ad aired from Oct. 24 to Oct. 30, found the Obama campaign aired TWICE as many spots as Romney – 35,731 to 17,277, with estimated spending of $24 million for Obama and $11 million for Romney. … Even adding in the outside groups, the total Democratic message had 79,089 spots (Obama + outside groups), to 64,945 for Republicans

A report from the Wesleyan Media Project similarly concludes that “the Obama campaign has sponsored about 50 percent of all of the ads aired and has out-advertised the Romney campaign by a 2.6 to 1 margin in both ads aired and estimated money spent.” Alexander Burns adds:

Given Romney’s powerful fundraising over the summer, it tells you something about both his media operation (refresh your memory here) and Obama’s that the president has maintained an advantage in hard-dollar TV advertising. On the flip side, the fact that Obama has managed to stay in control of the air war means that in the event he loses, it will be somewhat harder for his party to blame it all on Citizens United, the super PACs, Charles and David Koch, etc.

Speaking of which, outside spenders spent $526 million just in October. Charlie Cook thinks Obama’s resilient swing-state polling is the direct result of his early ad approach:

In the states that have experienced the minimalist campaign, the popular-vote numbers are even or maybe up for Republican nominee Mitt Romney by a bit. For people who live there, the campaign effectively started with the first debate. Many undecided voters were pleasantly surprised by Romney, who presented himself as moderate, reasonable, intelligent, and earnest. He also came across as more of a problem-solver than the ideological robot voters had seen earlier in the campaign through their binoculars.

But for those in the battleground states, who had seen Romney’s head bashed in last summer by the Obama campaign’s attacks on Bain Capital, plant closings, layoffs, outsourcing, and income taxes—not to mention bank accounts in Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, and Switzerland—skepticism has persisted. Much more than in the rest of the country, Romney’s scar tissue continues to get in the way of these swing-state voters fully embracing this new and improved Mitt.

Another report shows Obama winning the digital ad war as well. Meanwhile, the only new advertising from Romney today was a web ad that spins today’s jobs report:

Elsewhere, there’s another new anti-Obama ad from Rove’s Crossroads groups, this time from his dark-money GPS outfit. It will air in Minnesota as part of a $1.4 million buy:

Lastly, on the down-ticket, Obama cuts an ad for Connecticut Senate candidate Chris Murphy:

Ad War archive here.