On Sunday night, the Kansas City Chiefs host the Tennessee Titans in a game vital to both teams’ hopes of advancing to the NFL playoffs with the best record in their conference.
As Election Day approaches Tuesday, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Eric Schmitt is targeting the huge hometown audience expected to tune in with his latest ad buy of the campaign — shelling out $75,000 for a single ad that will be aired during the broadcast on Kansas City’s KSHB. TV.
Overall, Schmitt spent $2.1 million on broadcast advertising for the fall campaign. His Democratic opponent, Trudy Busch Valentine, more than doubled that amount, spending $4.8 million.
But it seems that Valentine’s Day spending, mostly from his own wealth, did not change his position as an underdog in the race. Schmitt had a nine to 14 percentage point lead in four recent pollsa margin that hasn’t changed significantly since the first head-to-head polls after the Aug. 2 primary.
The Independent tracked advertising spend by candidates seeking state and federal jobs in conjunction with the University of Missouri School of Journalism.
Using reports from TV and radio stations to the Federal Communications Commission, the tracker shows spending for Tuesday’s election will be just a fraction of the 2018 Senate race, when Republican Josh Hawley defeated incumbent United States Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill in a campaign where total spending exceeded $125. million.
This year’s fall spending was also well below that of the primaries. In the two Senate primaries, candidates and outside groups combined to spend $19.5 million on television advertising and more than $50 million in total.
Neither Schmitt nor Valentine began their fall TV campaigns until late September. Spending accelerated, especially from Valentine’s Day as election day approached.
In recent weeks, Schmitt has received help from the political action committee, which has been the primary campaign’s biggest spender.
Save Missouri Values has spent $1 million on TV ads since Oct. 26, largely in smaller markets outside of the Kansas City and St. Louis areas. He spent $3.3 million on television ads and $5.3 million in total to help Schmitt win the Republican nomination.
Recent PAC ads have promoted Schmitt as a counterweight to Democratic President Joe Biden, noting his lawsuits against the administration as Missouri attorney general and showing footage of Schmitt visiting the Mexican border to demonstrate his opposition to immigration policies. of Biden.
Schmitt was also aided by $260,000 spent on his behalf by the Missouri Republican State Committee and $105,000 spent on TV ads by a group called Crypto Innovation.
Until Save Missouri Values began spending, Valentine had no advertising running in the state’s smaller markets, opting to focus on major metropolitan areas as well as Columbia and Springfield markets. . She made up for that this week, spending $1.6 million statewide since Monday and making ad buys in Joplin, Cape Girardeau and northeast Missouri.
Overall, Valentine has spent $952,000 outside major metropolitan areas since the primary.
Its advertisements focus on two issues – the impact of the abortion ban in Missouriimplemented by a proclamation issued by Schmitt following the June Supreme Court decision reversing Roe v. Wade, and Schmitt’s votes to allow foreign ownership of Missouri farmland.
There are only two other contests on Tuesday’s ballot where TV spending topped $1 million in ad spend.
Legal Missouri, which promotes Amendment 3 legalizing the recreational use and commercial sale of marijuana, spent $1.1 million on ads it ran. There is no organized group spending to defeat Amendment 3, but it has strong criticism, including Tishaura Jones, Mayor of St. Louisthe Missouri Agricultural Bureau and NAACP of Missouri.
And the most expensive legislative race of the year will be the 24th District State Senate race, pitting state Rep. Tracy McCreery, D-St. Louis, versus Republican George Hruza. The winner will replace Democratic limited-term state senator Jill Schupp.
Hruza spent $641,000 on broadcast ads, and his efforts were boosted by an additional $296,000 spent by the Majority Senate PAC, the GOP state Senate campaign committee. McCreery spent $556,000, a dedicated PAC to support her added $215,000, and Majority Forward, the Senate Democratic campaign committee, spent $272,000 on ads run.
The only other statewide contest, for the state auditor, might be the cheapest statewide election in decades. Neither State Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick, the Republican nominee, nor former state Representative Alan Green, the Democratic nominee, bought any advertising that aired before Tuesday’s vote.