NBC News has released a telling report and breakdown of all campaign ad spending to date for the 2012 Presidential Election. I highly recommend that you examine this report and see just where all this money is coming from and who it is benefitting most.
With the general election campaign now going over a half-billion dollars, we have now passed the total spent in the 2008 Presidential Election, according to the report.
Much of this spending is due to the virtually unlimited influence of outside SuperPac spending where, so far – in that category – Pro-Romney spending has out-paced Pro-Obama spending 9-1. Of course that outside spending imbalance is unlikely to continue throughout the fall campaign, but it is yet further evidence of how a few mega-wealthy donors (like Sheldon Adelson and the Koch Brothers) have taken unfettered advantage of the controversial 5-4 Supreme Court decision, Citizens United. It has been widely reported that Sheldon Adelson alone may be willing to spend as much as $100 million to defeat President Obama (curiously at the same time that some of his business interests are reportedly under investigation by the Justice Department and Securities & Exchange Commission for bribery and other charges).
Voters in the half-dozen or so key swing states (I live in one of those – Nevada) will likely be seeing a constant barrage of TV ads and, so far I’ve watched a few of my favorite shows and witnessed that political ads (usually 30 second spots) account for just about every other ad one sees every hour…and it’s only mid-August! Some estimates range as high as over $2 billion that will be spent just on the Romney/Ryan vs. Obama/Biden top of the 2012 election card…who knows how much will be spent overall for senate, congressional and state campaigns. American Democracy in action? Or is this deep-pocket monied interests allowed to exert undue influence on it?
The peculiar thing is that – related to money spent just on the presidential race – it is largely being used to influence the very small percentage of undecided, largely independent voters in a small number of battleground swing states. Polls have consistently shown that approximately 95% of likely voters have already made up their minds on either Obama or Romney. So, to reach the roughly 5% of undecideds…all of the rest of us will have to endure an endless stream of largely vitriolic negative ads…day-in and day-out until the November 6th election!
I have reported earlier on the apathy of the more than 40% of voting age Americans…90 million (more than two-thirds of whom are registered) who are expected to stay home and simply not participate in the election. I have included it again in this article and (until my editors tell me enough, I plan to repeat it in every article this site publishes under my byline right up to election day). These apathetic (I won’t say pathetic) Americans will also see all the political ads, conventions, debates, etc. We must do everything we can to get them motivated enough to vote.
Voting is an American right that millions of our servicemen and women have fought for and many died to protect.
Want to REALLY say, “Thank you for your service?” Then damn it,….VOTE!
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