Ad wars to intensify
February 15th, 2012
06:16 PM ET
3 years ago

Ad wars to intensify

Washington (CNN) - The war of commercials from the presidential campaigns and various super PACs supporting candidates is expected to intensify in the coming days and to greatly expand in its scope.

Mitt Romney's campaign has now bought almost $1.2 million in ad time in Michigan, a source who tracks media buys told CNN. So far the campaign has up a positive spot in the state where the candidate talks about his Michigan roots. His campaign did not respond to a request for comment regarding its ad strategy.

With Rick Santorum vowing to vigorously compete in Michigan, which votes on Feb. 28th, the state will be a major focus of activity with all sides knowing the outcome there will be a key factor in determining how the race unfolds.

Santorum's campaign went up with its third spot in Michigan Wednesday going after Romney after releasing two positive ads in the state on Tuesday.

So far the campaign's ad purchases in the state have been small.

The Santorum team is planning on expanding its ad presence there and in other key states hoping it can start introducing the former Pennsylvania senator and also pre-empt attacks coming from the tremendous financial and organizational advantage enjoyed by the Romney team and the super PAC supporting him.

In the next several days, the Santorum campaign said it plans to start airing commercials in Arizona, which also votes on Feb. 28th, as well as key Super Tuesday states Ohio, Georgia, Tennessee and Oklahoma, according to senior campaign officials John Brabender and Alice Stewart.

Romney is getting a major boost from that well-funded super PAC supporting his candidacy, Restore Our Future. This week it bought $1.5 million in commercials in Michigan, Arizona, Ohio, Tennessee, Georgia and Oklahoma but also moderate buys in March 13th states of Alabama and Mississippi.

The group on Wednesday started airing an ad criticizing Santorum as a “Washington insider” in Michigan, Arizona and Ohio.

The super PAC backing Santorum, the Red, White and Blue Fund, will try to minimize the impact in Michigan. It will announce on Thursday it is launching a "substantial" ad buy in Michigan, its spokesman Stuart Roy told CNN. He did not provide further details.

Santorum will need the help in order to combat the dual barrage from Romney and his allies.

Newt Gingrich currently has no ads running. Winning Our Future, the super PAC supporting Gingrich, will launch a national radio campaign on Thursday but has no plans for television buys, according to its spokesman Rick Tyler

Also see:

Gingrich: Santorum 'misunderstands' modern warfare

Santorum slams Obama administration as 'elite snobs'

Romney surrogates attack Santorum's record

CNN Poll: Romney's likability fading

CNN Poll: Gender and income gaps in GOP nomination battle


Filed under: 2012 • Michigan • Mitt Romney • Rick Santorum
soundoff (64 Responses)
  1. jaywing

    Have to admit I love the side by side photos of these two. "I want you to know, friends, that my brain is this small." "Oh, yeah! You think your brain is small? Well my brain is This small."

    February 16, 2012 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  2. Ralph in Orange Park, FL

    This is why I DVR all my TV shows. I can skip right over the ads.

    February 16, 2012 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  3. David

    Is this the best the GOP has to offer? You think the party would have learned something from the last election debacle.

    February 16, 2012 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  4. IndeePendant

    Mr. Am MOR(E)MON(EY) looks very very 'MEAN' when he is angry. He is like 'why the h**k my ads are not working? why can't these people just vote for me and go home?'

    February 16, 2012 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  5. A Texan

    They have trotted several potential candidates out, however, none appeal to this Independent --– Obama looks better than any Republican wana-be at this time......................

    February 16, 2012 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  6. GI Joe.

    Look at the money these shadow groups are pouring into the economy. Hope someone in the advertising business is saving it for next year, because it will (hopefully) be gone then.

    February 16, 2012 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  7. Taran

    @ardale

    The Koch Bros might go broke if this keeps up.....naw just wishful thinking
    --------------------------------------
    No more broke than Soros and Buffett supporting Obama.

    February 16, 2012 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  8. Obama's Snake Oil on Sale - Git yur lies and deceit here!!

    GI Joe. - Look at the money these shadow groups are pouring into the economy
    ==========================================================
    Democrats have had these groups for years, usually supported by George Soros and other equally nefarious slugs. And now Obama wil have one too! I look forward to your future posts condemning Obama's "shadow group" attacks run by a former Obama administration goon.

    February 16, 2012 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  9. Indy

    If you look at this picture you could think these two are related, wow they look similar ! Maybe Santorum is Romneys brother from another brother

    February 16, 2012 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  10. cali girl

    It really sickens me to think how all of this money could be better spent. The ads, let's see, 1.2 million for Romney?
    How many families could be brought out of foreclosure with that? And please repugs, don't even start with how much Obama is getting from who. Koch, Rove, and Vegas Mafia should all be in jail. 11 million from Vegas in one day?

    February 16, 2012 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  11. Lulz

    Voter frauds = Romney, Sanctorum, Obama, and Newt.

    February 16, 2012 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  12. YOU Decide 2012: A bankrupt socialist welfare country or a thriving capitalist super power

    cali girl - It really sickens me to think how all of this money could be better spent. The ads, let's see, 1.2 million for Romney?
    How many families could be brought out of foreclosure with that? And please repugs, don't even start with how much Obama is getting from who. Koch, Rove, and Vegas Mafia should all be in jail. 11 million from Vegas in one day?
    ===========================================================================================
    Don't you just love it... When Obama, the unions, the leftists, George Soros spend huge sums on campaigning, no prpblem. But when others, that they don't agree with do it, now that's a problem that must be fixed by putting people in jail. Sounds like the leftist in the USA want to turn the USA into USSR version 2. Freedom of speech??? HA! Who needs THAT?!!

    February 16, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  13. Voice of Reason

    Ad wars to intensify? Oh Good. Cause we havent quite had our fill of greasy phony politicians tearing eachother down, fear-mongering, and basically insulting our intelligence at every turn. Cause I just cant get enough of grainy photos of politicians with goofy looks on their faces cause the picture was taken mid-sentence or even mid-word. Just add a dash of ominous, minor-key music in the background and those out-of-context scary soundbites make me feel right at home.

    The irony in all this is people wonder why we dont trust politicians... When we have been bombarded with innumerable negative images, messages and insinuations.

    February 16, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  14. Ancient Texan

    Romney is still convinced that he is entitled to the nomination since he's been running for 5 years, and with his deep pocket spending of multi-millions to crucify his opponents, he's hurt everyone, including himself ; it's backfiring on him. IF he is the nominee, I'll vote for him, but he's not the first choice.

    February 16, 2012 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
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