Another week. Another $10.4 million thrown in the fire we call television advertising.
Florida’s governor’s race is now a $50 million-plus commercial spectacle, with more than 71 percent of that spending from Gov. Rick Scott.
During the week that ended Friday, Scott dropped an additional $8 million for current and future ads. That’s about a 23 percent increase for the Republican, dwarfing Democrat Charlie Crist’s ad-buy increase of 17 percent, or almost $2.5 million.
If TV ads decided the governor’s race, Scott would win in a landslide.
There’s more to an election than running commercials, however, just as there’s more to winning a war than just using air power. Like a military campaign, a political campaign needs infantry — the “ground game” or “field operations” of paid staff and volunteers who phone voters and reach out them face to face.:
But the latter depends on the former. And so, therefore, does the election.
Think of the old military adage: Fire without maneuver is inconclusive, maneuver without fire is suicide. A Florida campaign that exists only on air isn’t enough; an off-air campaign goes nowhere.
Last week's post on the ad buys is here with a prior graphic; this graphic charts the increases in ad-buy orders for the week ending Friday.
Below, the trend tells the tale: Scott has spent early and often, especially on TV ad buys, and now his campaign and political committees' once-sizable cash-on-hand advantage is down to less than $1 million against Crist's. Of course, Scott has the GOP and his own millions to rely on.