Hoping to squeeze out a win, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign aired more than 5,700 TV ads in the two weeks ahead of Tuesday’s Wisconsin presidential primary — more than a third of the nearly 16,000 TV ads aired by both Republicans and Democrats leading up to the Badger State battle.
One Sanders ad, titled “People Before Polluters,” aired roughly once every 20 minutes since March 22, according to a Center for Public Integrity review of preliminary data compiled by Kantar Media/CMAG, a political advertising data firm.
Sanders’ Wisconsin ad blitz follows a massive $44 million fundraising haul in March, funds that can buoy Sanders campaign for months leading up to July’s Democratic National Convention. Meanwhile, Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton raked in a less stellar $29.5 million in March.
On the airwaves, Sanders outpaced Clinton by more than 2,400 TV ads ahead of Wisconsin’s primary.
“When you’re getting your message out there more than your opponent, that’s helpful,” said Travis Ridout, co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project, which tracks political advertising. “It sends a signal that you’re a viable candidate.”
“If all people saw were Clinton ads, they would question his [Sanders’] viability,” Ridout added.