“A trio of Democratic outside groups are launching new TV and digital ads Wednesday targeting House Republicans over the potential government shutdown,” NBC News reports.
“As he delivers his spiel to the camera… the gas pump can be heard beeping off camera with increasing urgency, beckoning him, as gas pumps do, to pay and select a kind of fuel. He somehow keeps up the whole charade throughout the incessant beeping, holding the nozzle into his gas tank as if viewers might not notice there’s no gas coming out.”
Washington Examiner: “Campaigns for eight Democratic and Republican politicians have paid over $41,500 combined between 2011 and 2023 for advertisements in Sing Tao U.S… The newspaper is a subsidiary of the Hong Kong-based Sing Tao News Corporation and reported itself as a foreign agent in 2021 that is involved in ‘political activity.'”
“To say people went bananas for this video would be a huge understatement. It had 10 million views across all platforms within three hours. That number was over 50 million by Thursday. Marjorie Taylor Greene stumbling into a campaign ad for Biden is just too much fun.”
“It’s embarrassing for Greene and highlights her willfully ignorant approach to public life. The video is also a testament to the talented folks doing digital rapid response for Biden and the Democratic National Committee. Strategically, this video bodes well for Team Biden as they prepare for a long and brutal campaign.”
“I love dunking on MTG, but I am in love with this video for another reason — it is the archetype of what political communicators should aim for.”
“A pro-Ron DeSantis super PAC uses an Artificial Intelligence version of Donald Trump’s voice in a new television ad attacking the former president,” Politico reports.
“Its content appears to be based off of a post that Trump made on his social media site Truth Social last week…. It will run statewide in Iowa tomorrow and the ad buy was at least $1 million — a massive sum though one doable for the well-heeled super PAC.”
A new ad from Progress Action Fund might be the raciest political ad ever.
The Wrap: “The scene opens up with a man and a woman kissing in bed, both of them in their underwear with the woman straddling the man and asking if he has a condom. When the man reaches into his nightstand drawer in hopes of practicing safe sex, an elderly, white male hand snatches the condom out before he can, causing both the woman and her lover to scream in confusion at the dark-suited, red-tied man standing over them.”
Said the elderly man: “Sorry, you can’t use those… I’m your Republican congressman. Now that we’re in charge, we’re banning birth control.”
Vice News: “AI-generated political ads are officially here. And no one—including the campaigns themselves, let alone the voters—are prepared to handle this new reality.”
“Artificial intelligence is becoming more sophisticated by the day, and candidates and campaigns are just beginning to grapple with practical and ethical concerns over AI-produced content creeping into politics. The time when a deepfake videos which can’t be easily discerned from real events play a major role in campaigns seems not only inevitable but closer than ever.”
“A Midwest antiabortion group used cellphone location data to target online content to visitors of certain Planned Parenthood clinics,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
“The campaign used a common digital-advertising technology called geofencing to extract the unique device identifiers of phones carried into Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers… It then used those device IDs to target those people on popular social-networking sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat with antiabortion messaging.”
“All three social networks said the ads violated their policies and said future such campaigns would be rejected.”
Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY) introduced legislation that would require disclosure of AI-generated content in political ads — part of an effort, she said, to “get the Congress going on addressing many of the challenges that we’re facing with AI,” the Washington Post reports.
“Donald Trump has poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into Facebook and Google ads in recent weeks, leveraging the chaos around his indictment to fundraise and collect data ahead of his 2024 run,” Axios reports.
“Trump used the exact same playbook ahead of the 2020 election.”
“Elon Musk took over Twitter last fall with a pledge of transparency for the social media giant — but so far political advertising on the platform has been anything but forthcoming,” Politico reports.
“Twitter has failed to disclose some political ads running on its site since early March… At least three promoted fundraising tweets were not included in Twitter’s own data, seemingly contradicting the company’s policies and raising doubts about the integrity of the platform’s data and how many other political ads could go unreported.”
“Twitter Inc. said it plans to expand the political advertising it allows on the social-media platform after banning most political ads in 2019, in the latest policy change by new owner Elon Musk,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
“The company also said Tuesday that it is relaxing its policy for cause-based ads in the U.S. Such ads call for people to take action, educate and raise awareness in connection with the following categories: civic engagement, economic growth, environmental stewardship and social-equity causes.”
“One of the biggest radio ad blitzes in the final stretch of the midterm elections is a provocative package of advertisements aimed at deepening cultural divides over transgender care for children and racial tensions,” the New York Times reports.
“Financed by two groups run by former Trump administration officials, the ads have been placed with Black and Hispanic radio stations, along with conservative talk radio stations.”
“But the inflammatory radio spots contrast with a more standard-issue ad campaign this month from former President Donald Trump. Mr. Trump’s TV spots, created by his super PAC, MAGA Inc., have promoted messages on inflation and crime that generally align in both issue and tone with those of many Republican candidates seeking federal office.”
A super PAC ad that ran during the World Series may have well been paid for by Vladimir Putin himself.
“It covers the Republican basics: A seemingly conscientious and decent owner of a small business—and his family—is dealing with economic hardship and feels endangered by those liberal Democrats. But the ad leaves out important information: Erickson is not merely a local business owner concerned with inflation; he is a homophobic and Islamophobic pastor.”
New York Times: “Voter-profiling systems like the Covid-19 scores may be invisible to most people. But they provide a glimpse into a vast voter data-mining ecosystem in the United States involving dozens of political consulting, analytics, media, marketing and advertising software companies.”
“In the run-up to the midterm elections next month, campaigns are tapping a host of different scores and using them to create castes of their most desirable voters. There are ‘gun owner,’ ‘pro-choice’ and ‘Trump 2024’ scores, which cover everyday politics. There are also voter rankings on hot-button issues — a ‘racial resentment’ score, for example, and a ‘trans athletes should not participate’ score. There’s even a ‘U.F.O.s distrust government’ score.”
“Campaign and media consultants say such political-issue scores make it easier for candidates to surgically target messages to, and mobilize, the most receptive voters.”
“As the midterm campaign heads into its final weeks, political ad spending for the current two-year election cycle is on pace to more than double from the 2018 midterms,” the Wall Street Journal reports.
The Bulwark: “It’s working. Once ahead in the polls, Democrat Mandela Barnes, the lieutenant governor of Wisconsin, is now trailing Republican incumbent Ron Johnson in the state’s race for U.S. Senate, a shift also seen recently in other important races. One factor is an onslaught of negative messaging that seeks to paint Barnes as a crime-loving radical. A key word here is ‘paint.'”
“One of the ads, from the National Republican Senate Committee, ends with a shot that brands Barnes, who is black, as “different” and “dangerous” as it pictures him alongside three congresswomen of color who are members of “The Squad,” none of whom has campaigned with him. For good measure, the state Republican party sent out a mailer in which the color of Barnes’s skin has clearly been darkened.”