September 23rd, 2010
06:14 PM ET
8 years ago

Special interest groups take to airwaves

(CNN) - The Senate Democratic leadership failed Thursday to muster up enough support for a bill that would have put new restrictions on political television advertising by special interest groups.

The attempt by Senate Democrats to break the Republican filibuster on the "DISCLOSE Act" means that organizations and groups running political TV commercials do not have to disclose who is funding the ads.

Earlier this year, the Supreme Court ruled that such disclosure was not needed. Even if the Senate approved the measure, it likely would not have affected the midterm elections – and it would have only been enforceable in federal races.

So, how much is being spent by outside groups on TV ads in this election cycle, federal and state combined? Here are the staggering statistics:

· 167 different interest groups have spent $140 million so far on political television commercials in the 2010 election cycle. At this point in time in the last midterm election, 2006, less than half that amount was spent on TV ads.
· In 2010, 83 groups have run $54 million in commercials targeting federal races, while 84 organizations have spent $86 million on state contests.

And expect this number to more than double in the closing weeks.

"We are going to see more groups, more spending and more ads in the last 40 days of this election than we have seen in the previous nine months," said Evan Tracey, president of Campaign Media Analysis Group and CNN's consultant on TV advertising.

Tracey noted that organizations are free to run any political commercial right up to Election Day.

Filed under: Ads
soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Clwyd

    The Robert's Court and the right wing nuts extremists of the repulsive republicans has come up with a sure way to buy the November elections and see no reason to stop since Robert's gave it to them on a silver platter!

    September 23, 2010 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  2. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    It is a very sad day in America, when special interests can buy our elections! Look no further than the Koch brothers, creators and funders of the Tea Party! Their billions are going to hurt our democracy. Wake UP America!

    In NOvember vote NO for the Party of NO!

    September 23, 2010 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  3. T'SAH from Virginia

    Yes – the SAME special interest groups the RepubliCAN'Ts control and will start hiring after the elections to make it seem as if the REPUBLICAN'Ts are the reason why the unemployment rate will go down!! Don’t be FOOLED!!!

    Come on America and not just DEMOCRATS!!! Wake up and smell the CORRUPTION!!!

    Check and see who these special interest groups are – Check to see if they are filing as a 'small business" in order to rake in Millions and Billions of dollars – Check to see why the RepubliCAN’Ts are REALLY interested in so-call ‘hurting’ small businesses if the tax cut expires – The Pledge to American” the RepubliCAN’Ts are pledging is nothing more than the SAME of the Bush years – did they mention eliminating “PORK” and BEANS interests??

    RepubliCAN’Ts are taking advantage of the suffering American people and they DO NOT have the middle class interest at heart – it is BIG CORP!!!

    This is T’SAH from Virginia – FIRED UP – and my impersonator better BACK OFF!!!

    September 23, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  4. Not my cup of tea!

    The GOPTea Party "Pledge to America" is stupid. These guys act like their in a frat house?The GOPTea Party has purtiy test and now this stupid pledge. This will never work. Because Jim Demint said, and I quote "keep your word or die". The American don't need a pledge, we need a promise.

    September 23, 2010 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  5. George of the jungle

    This was terrible legislation an I wish the democrats could stop it. This will be bad for the country in the long run. Our country will be run by special interest.

    September 23, 2010 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  6. Vote Democrat or Die hard!

    You know what America, what piss off big business more than any is when they spend all their money and still lose. That's the message we need to send this November. Ideas win election, not fake candidates with money!

    September 23, 2010 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  7. The Only Way To Defeat The Hundred Of Millions of Koch Brother, Big Oil, Big Pharma and Big Coal Money Is To . . .


    If you stay at home and the republics win, expect government shut down, Clinton-style investigations and no regulation of big business.

    Do you like Bush economics? – stay home and let the g.o.p. take over again.

    September 23, 2010 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  8. southern cousin

    I am sure the slimy, corrupt unions were exempted from the too cutely named DISCLOSE Act. How come socialist communists and Demcorat liberals always come up with such weird names for their bills that screw Americans?

    September 23, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  9. Bill from GA

    This spending rule could open our elections to all sorts of outside influence: Europeans, Chinese, Socialists, whatever.
    This may be just the start: America for sale. Buy your election here.

    It wouldn't work if we were not stupid enough to believe anything repeated enough times.

    Nazi propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels said:"a lie, no matter how outrageous, is repeated often enough that it will eventually be accepted as truth.".

    September 23, 2010 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  10. D. Bunker

    Rest assured that the VAST majority of these ads will be financed by faceless ultrarich corporate predators (although the billionaire Kich brothers have been outed). We can thank the five idiots on our Supreme Court for confusing money with speech. Time to end corporate "citizenship" and implement real campaign finance reform.

    September 23, 2010 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  11. D

    I think it's very telling that republicans want to stop this bill. Makes you wonder who they are getting money from.

    September 23, 2010 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |