October 12th, 2008
10:08 AM ET
6 years ago

Both campaigns spending about the same on negative ads

A McCain ad calls Obama 'not presidential.
A McCain ad calls Obama 'not presidential.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The race for the White House is being waged in the final weeks in American living rooms through a blitz of negative campaign commercials.

And though Sen. Barack Obama's campaign circulated a University of Wisconsin Advertising Project study earlier this week indicating all of Sen. John McCain's ads are negative compared to just 34 percent of Obama's, both campaigns are spending about equal amounts on attack ads.

An analysis of campaign commercials aired over the last seven days shows Obama outspent McCain nationwide by more than 2-1: $21.5 million vs. $9.2 million.

Watch: Negative ads dominate the campaign homestretch

But just under half of the money Obama is spending is going toward negative spots, meaning the Illinois senator is roughly keeping pace with his GOP rival when it comes to negative commercials, in terms of cash spent.

Check out CNN's Ad Spending Election Tracker

Campaign Media Analysis Group's Evan Tracey, CNN's consultant on campaign advertising, said Obama's cash advantage over McCain provides the Illinois senator with a luxury McCain cannot afford: the means to run both positive and negative TV spots.

"McCain is almost all negative because he needs to be," Tracey said, adding that McCain is "behind in the polls and outgunned."

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soundoff (203 Responses)
  1. M. Bryan

    Sen. McCain and Gov. Palin are digging themselves ever deeper into a hole every time they utter disparaging and untrue remarks.
    Doesn't Palin know that branding Sen. Obama a "terrorist" for
    being on the same board as a former terrorist is nonsense?
    Either someone else is putting words in her mouth or she is an
    utter fool. Does Palin living with a man who once belonged to the Alaskan Separatist movement make her a Separatist? One cannot get much closer than that!

    October 12, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  2. Precious

    As a Democrat, I surely do not want to see a Democratic run Congress, a Democratic run White House, and a Democratic run Senate. The leaders who have gotten us into this mess are some of the Democratic leadership themselves, and we know and have heard of a few (Dodd, Pelosi) and a few others, in which most of the Republicans did not have the Power of stop because the Democrats outnumbered the Republicans in votes. Of course not everyone in power is totally clear of this mess, but we can surely look more closely to see which leaders/party were behind all this mess. America let us not use fear to make this matter worse by giving power to one entire party. Let us not be blinded with anger and outrage that we cannot see the road ahead of us. I believe John McCain is the man to put in the White House, who will noT allow certain leaders to get away with what they have gotten away with in the past. I believe that for all John McCain has gone through throughout his entire life, will never disappoint his Country, because it was not the Republicans, Democrats, Independents and/or Conservatives who have gotten him this far, it was God, and I believe that John McCain will give back more to God and his Country before he leaves this world. John McCain will give his ALL TO HIS COUNTRY. I cannot see John McCain disappointing the American people, in the last stretch of his life, for any political reasons or future career. America, let us give John McCain the chance he deserve because he will never fail us.

    October 12, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  3. Justin Time

    Now she's saying that she knows who "the bad guys are, ok?". It's like she's talking to a bunch of morons – but wait, she is! The bad guys are apparently everyone who hates America – which, after Bush, is like.... most people in the world. What she doesn't talk about is how to fix it. Hate doesn't do it, Sarah. Innuendo doesn't do it. Inciting to riot and to do violence definately will not do it, Sarah. What else do you have, eh?
    Maybe the American people will wake up from their 8 year nightmare soon... but not if they keep on subscribing to ignorance and hate. The McPain team seems to revel in it. Sorry state of affairs for sure.
    From CANADA: good luck to the decent American people voting for Obama who are left to fix the mess.

    October 13, 2008 01:43 am at 1:43 am |
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