Op-Ed: Misleading political TV ads are filling up California’s ‘news deserts’
This week’s TV ad blitz by several major national advertisers is a sign of the times.
The commercials, airing in battleground districts from Florida to Washington, are targeting voters in counties and neighborhoods with relatively little political news coverage.
They’re meant to shape their voting choices in the way most Californians get their news from cable or the radio these days, according to campaign consultants, and have already turned out to be a powerful form of marketing.
The ads, paid for by a variety of national companies and groups, range from the obvious — a Super Bowl ad featuring a black athlete with “superpower” hair touting the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act — to a humorous spot touting a new “wisdom” book from the “Bible.”
They are part of an intense, multi-faceted marketing campaign by a series of national political groups, all of which are hoping the ads will help turn the once-sleepy battleground state of Florida into a campaign-year bonanza.
The ad blitz, which began with a Super Bowl Super Bowl spot featuring Obama’s “Yes, we can.” is aimed at flipping the state blue in the Nov. 6 election. In the past week alone, the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee have launched TV commercials, as well as a new ad campaign on Facebook.
The ads represent a dramatic shift in how TV advertising is funded and managed in the race for the White House.
The ads come up short of their lofty, Democratic-primary aspirations, as well as some of the other talking points that campaign groups have been hawking to voters in recent weeks, including “America is at a crossroads” and “this election isn’t about who’s better or who’s worst, it’s who’