Is Obama spending away his popularity?


If you’re like me and you watch a lot of television (a LOT of television), you may have thought that Barack Obama has been on your tv almost as much as those Geico cavemen.

Well your instincts are correct.

According to Ben Smith, Obama is on track for the coming week to double Clinton’s media spending in Pennsylvania – with $3.3 million… for one week! That’s a LOT of 30-second spots and a LOT of money for local television stations. Channel 6 must be absolutely raking it in for their corporate overlords at ABC/Disney.

Sasha Issenberg, a former Philadelphia Magazine writer who went on to star in a movie, write a book about sushi and is now closely following the campaign for the Boston Globe, asked local political media wiz Neil Oxman about Obama’s spending a while back when Obama was spending a paltry $2.2 million per week:

“Nobody has ever spent 2.2 million in this state: not Rendell, not Specter, not Casey, not Santorum, not Bush, not Kerry,” said Oxman, naming the best-funded candidates to run statewide in recent years. “That’s unbelievable.”

Susie Madrak points out that according to the ARG poll that gave Clinton a 20-point lead yesterday, if you’re like 23% of likely Democratic primary voters, all of that spending on television may not be having its intended effect:

23% of likely Democratic primary voters say that excessive exposure to Obama’s advertising is causing them to support Clinton.

Madrak also points out that the aforementioned Oxman was apparently courted by the Obama campaign to do media consulting for them in PA but he declined when it became apparent that those Obama folks didn’t seem to know what they don’t know – Pennsylvania:

Oxman said the Obama people wanted to bring him on as a consultant for the PA primary, but he turned it down because they wouldn’t listen to him. He warned them against overdoing it, but they insisted the ad saturation worked in other states and would work here.

So let’s take the most unscientific poll ever. Any Pennsylvanian (or South Jerseyan for that matter since you’re in the Philly the media market) care to weigh in with your impressions of the Obamaturation of the airwaves? Have you been seeing them a lot and has the frequency of the ads outweighed the message of the ads in their ability to convince you?

If you’re reading this blog then you must really be a junkie for political news so I doubt that any ad – television or radio – would cause you to vote for a candidate but the constant drumbeat of “I’m Barack Obama and I approve that you watch so much television” may be enough to turn you off.

For my part, I watch mostly Food Network and Comedy Central – two cable channels that apparently don’t reach the target demos for this advertising strategy.

(Susie Madrak link via Paul Krugman who apparently loves the Tivo and the oldies.)


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