Columbia, South Carolina (CNN) – More than $3.5 million on advertising for GOP presidential candidate Rick Perry has been spent in less than 30 days, thanks in part to the candidate's deep war chest and the help of an outside political group.
Perry, whose campaign had $15 million cash on hand as of October 1, has gone on an advertising blitz spending up to $2.8 million on television and radio ads primarily in Iowa, but they've also run ads in New Hampshire and nationwide on a cable news station.
Programming note: GOP presidential candidates face off at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday, November 22, in the CNN Republican National Security Debate in Washington, D.C.
His campaign has received a significant boost from the Perry-friendly Super PAC Make Us Great Again, which works independently from his campaign but so far has spent more than three-quarters of a million dollars supplementing Perry campaign efforts by placing their own television and radio advertisements.
This is the most any White House hopeful has spent on advertising this 2012 presidential cycle. Texas Rep. Ron Paul comes in second having spent more than $2 million so far.
Where the Perry campaign has thus far devoted much of its advertising resources to Iowa, Make Us Great Again is pouring a significant amount of money into South Carolina, home to fiscal and social conservatives the Texas governor must court if he wants to win the critical first-in-the-south primary on Jan. 21.
Perry's poll numbers have dropped significantly since the Texas governor entered the race with much fanfare in August but the presidential candidate is benefiting from successful third-quarter fundraising that can be used for paid advertising and get out the vote efforts.
According to a source with access to media ad buy information, the Perry campaign is spending nearly $1 million to run ads nationally on The Fox News Channel through most of November, and as much as $1.8 million is being spent in Iowa to air ads over broadcast, cable and radio stations throughout the state.
According to Make Us Great Again, the group spent more than a quarter of a million dollars on running two advertisements on television and radio in South Carolina in the 10 days leading up to Thanksgiving.
Their "Leadership" ad is running on broadcast and cable stations in the Charleston, Columbia, Greenville-Spartanburg-Asheville, and Myrtle-Beach-Florence media markets. The "True Conservative" ad is airing on radio stations in media markets located in Augusta, GA-Aiken, Charleston, Columbia, Greenville-Spartanburg, and Myrtle Beach-Florence.
The Super PAC's 60-minute radio spot refers to conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh saying Perry is a strong fiscal conservative. Emphasizing the candidate's social conservative pro-life record, the ad quotes evangelical Christian leader James Dobson calling Perry a "deeply committed Christian."
In Iowa, Make Us Great Again is spending approximately $188,000 targeting broadcast and cable stations in Cedar Rapids, Des Moines, Omaha-Council Bluffs, and Sioux City media markets with their "Conservative" ad.
Earlier this month, the same group spent more than $300,000 on airing the same two television ads in Iowa and South Carolina.
Perry's campaign has released five television ads within the last 30 days and their latest ad buy is expected to run through Nov. 30 except on Thanksgiving day. Stations have been instructed to rotate his latest "Outsider" ad 50/50 with his "Lazy" ad released last week.
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