Campaign Ads: More Than 1 Million Aired In 2012 Election

If you feel like you're seeing a lot of political ads this time around, you're right. Mitt Romney, Barack Obama and the groups that support them have aired more than a million ads this campaign cycle, nearly 40 percent more than the amount aired in the 2008 election, according to a report released Friday by the Wesleyan Media Project.

"This is, by far, the most advertising we’ve seen in a presidential election," Erika Franklin Fowler, co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project, said in the report. "Everyone expected ads to be more abundant this election than in 2008, especially with super PAC involvement and both candidates opting out of public funding, but passing the one million mark is a real milestone."

Those figures don't include the final week, meaning the number of ads aired by election day should be well over the million mark. A majority of the aired advertisements have been in support of President Barack Obama, whose campaign aired 503,255 ads between April 11 and Oct. 29, 2012. The Romney campaign, by comparison, aired 190,784 ads in that period.

In the final week measured by the report, Oct. 22 to Oct. 29, Obama continued to air more ads and spend more money on them than Romney. The Republican campaign spent less on ads in that week than pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future, a switch for the campaign in general. However, the Romney campaign aired double the number of ads aired by Restore Our Future during the week.

The figures give a glimpse into which markets are being given highest priority by the candidates and outside groups. Denver residents were inundated with the largest number of ads, followed by Las Vegas, Orlando, Cleveland and Tampa. Ohio, unsurprisingly, had the largest number of markets with heavy advertising.

Read the full report here.


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