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TV ads are flying in 11 key state house races

Oct 19, 2016

Democrats and Republicans are spending heavily on TV ad buys to sway voters in a handful of state house elections.

Democrats need to win 9 seats currently held by Republicans next month to take control of the state house.    

According to the Michigan Campaign Finance Network’s analysis of Federal Communication Commission filings and Kantar Media/CMAG ad tracking data, candidates and groups that support or oppose them have aired an estimated $529,000 in broadcast TV ads through Monday, Oct. 17th.   The estimate does not include cable TV ad buys.

Craig Mauger, the executive director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network, says the money has been concentrated in 11 state house races, stretching from the Upper Peninsula to the Ohio border.  

“All 11 of these seats are currently held by Republicans and Democrats are likely making some effort to try to flip them,” says Mauger.

Mauger says Democrats started spending early on TV ads, but Republicans are making up ground.  He expects the money spent on advertising in 2016 will exceed the amount spent on state house races in 2014.