Arkansans Saw 96k Political Ads Worth $41.1M

Arkansans Saw 96k Political Ads Worth $41.1M

The dust has settled on the midterms and the GOP takeover that occurred in Arkansas, but more importantly, the political ads have ceased.

When it was all said and done, Arkansans were exposed to $41.1 million in ads, according to extensive research from The Center for Public Integrity.

That's 96,000 ads in all. 

It shows a big spending push on ads that ran in final weeks of the campaign. Remember that as of Oct. 24, CPI counted $33.1 million spent on 80,100 ads in Arkansas.

The U.S. Senate race — one of the most closely watched races in the country — was responsible for the majority of the money and ads. It alone flooded the airways with 65,700 ads worth $29.4 million. 

In terms of money spent, Arkansas ranked No. 8 overall, and jumped to No. 4 in terms of money spent per voter: $14. It trailed Iowa ($16), Alaska ($15) and New Hampshire ($15).

Republicans and their allies spent $15.5 million on 32,200 ads, while Democrats and their allies spent $13.9 million on 33,500 ads.

At the state-level, CPI found $11.7 million was spent on 30,300 ads, most coming from the gubernatorial race, which racked up $6.9 million worth of ads.

Republican Gov.-elect Asa Hutchinson led the way with $2.5 million spent on 6,085 ads, while his Democratic opponent Mike Ross spent $1.9 million on 4,864 ads. Races for attorney general ($2.5 million) and lieutenant governor ($1.8 million) also crossed the six-figure mark. Not far behind were two ballot issues — Issue 3 and Issue 4 — that resulted in $936,200 worth of ads.

At the national level, the numbers are staggering. U.S. Senate races saw $477.4 million spent on 1 million ads. The money was split almost down the middle, with $219.9 million from candidates and $200.4 million from outside groups. Political parties kicked in the remaining $43.3 million.

In state races, there was $855 million spent on 1.5 million ads. Candidates outspent the competition, accounting for $536.6 million, while outside groups were responsible for $199.4 million and political parties spent $116.4 million.

Overall, that's $1.3 billion spent on 2.5 million ads, according to research from CPI.

Those hoping for some political downtime might be out of luck, as the next presidential election gains more attention each day. That's not to mention U.S. senators and representatives who are already back in the fundraising mode.

Those include U.S. Sen.-elect Tom Cotton, who according to CPI sent out an invite for a Washington, D.C. fundraiser the day after he was elected. Attendance required a minimum contribution of $500.