Study: Obama Tops McCain On Ad Spending

Campaigns spent more than $28 million Sept 28- Oct. 4. Nearly 100% of McCain ads were negative, compared to 34% of Obama ads.

The campaigns of Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) spent more than $28 million on TV advertising between Sept. 28 and Oct. 4, with Obama spending the lion's share at $17.5 million to McCain's $11 million.

That is according to The University of Wisconsin Advertising Project, which uses TNS Media Intelligence data to track campaign spending.

And while Nielsen reported last week that as of early September, the campaigns were running about the same number of attack ads, the project found that for the week of Sept. 28-Oct. 4, almost 100% of the McCain ads were negative, while only 34% of Obama's were.

That $28 million total for the week is almost double the $15.5 million the campaigns spent on TV ads collectively in the first week of September (6-13).

Over half that money went to Midwest battleground states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa, Indiana and Wisconsin.

Ohio was the biggest beneficiary of TV Ad dollars, with Obama spending $2.218 million and McCain $1.72 million, according to the project, with Pennsylvania close behind (See chart below).

There have been relatively few ads from outside groups like the nonprofit 527's that were the target of much criticism in the 2004 election, according to the report. "Group ads still represent the dog that's not barking," said Advertising Project Director Ken Goldstein in the report.

Following is a breakdown of TV ad spending by state for Sept. 28-Oct. 4:

State                McCain             Obama

Colorado           $801,000          $980,000

Florida             $659,000           $2,213,000

Indiana             $179,000           $614,000

Iowa                  $227,000           $172,000

Michigan           $1,250,000        $1,590,000

Minnesota         $608,000           $121,000

Missouri            $193,000           $492,000

North Carolina    $148,000           $1,236,000

New Hampshire $160,000           $354,000

New Mexico      $144,000           $185,000

Nevada              $329,000           $616,000

Ohio                 $1,727,000        $2,218,000

Pennsylvania     $1,645,000        $2,202,000

Virginia             $547,000           $2,057,000

Wisconsin         $896,000          $1,189,000

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