TV stations are benefitting from President Obama's
controversial choice of Republican Senator Chuck Hagel (Neb.) for Secretary of
Defense, a choice that does not have the support of many Republicans.
According to a Sunlight Foundation analysis, groups opposing
Hagel have spent $123,000 on TV ads in various markets.
Conservative group Use Your Mandate spent $47,000 in New
York and Washington stations during Sunday morning public affairs shows;
Americans for a Strong Defense bought $63,000 worth of ads in North Carolina
and Colorado, and may have spent more given that their YouTube page has video
of ads targeting six senators they want to oppose the nomination.
In addition, The American Future Fund, which spent millions
to unseat the president, spent $14,000 on Fox stations on Sunday in Washington
targeting Hagel's personal finances.
According to Sunlight's Political Ad Sleuth online political
ad tracker, which benefits from the FCC's move last year to require stations to
post online political ad buys on an FCC website, the biggest beneficiary was
WRAL-TV Raleigh, N.C., with a $27,400 buy; followed KCNC-TV Denver at $18,800;
WRC-TV Washington with $25,000; WNBC New York with $15,000; and WTTG-TV
Washington with $14,000.
Sunlight points out that the Republican Jewish Coalition and
Emergency Committee for Israel have anti-Hagel videos on their homepages, but
so far it has not identified any airtime buys for those videos.
Former George W. Bush spokesman Ari Fleischer, a CNN
analyst, has been particularly outspoken on-air about what he says is Hagel's
lack of support for Israel.