Obama maintains ad advantage despite being outspent by GOP
President Obama and his allies have aired more ads in battleground states this month than Mitt Romney and his supporters, despite being outspent by the Republican nominee and GOP groups, according to a study released Wednesday.
The Obama campaign and its supporters spent $77 million on 112,730 advertisements from Oct. 1 to Oct. 21, according to the Wesleyan Media Project, which tracks and analyzes political ad spending. Romney and his allies, by contrast, spent more money — $87 million — on 15,000 fewer spots than their opponents.
The study also confirmed that 2012 has already shattered previous records for presidential ad spending, with 915,000 ads aired during the general election campaign through Sunday — a 44.5 percent increase compared with the same period four years ago.
The findings suggest that Obama and the Democrats may be able to weather a storm of Republican advertising purchases aimed at knocking the incumbent off balance in the final weeks of the election. One Republican media buyer calculates that GOP groups are outspending Democrats in this week by nearly 2 to 1.
But Obama has a key advantage over Romney by raising the bulk of his money through his campaign committee, which qualifies for discounted ad rates under federal election laws. That can allow Obama to pay much less for the same ads compared with conservative super PACs and other outside groups, which don’t qualify for such rates.