Oct 5, 2021 - Politics & Policy

By the numbers: Blue and red walls

Outside ad spending for and against Biden’s agenda in September 2021
Data: AdImpact; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Democratic groups are flooding the airwaves — and outspending conservative organizations — to support President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda, according to data compiled by AdImpact.

The big picture: Liberal and conservative groups have spent a combined $56 million on TV and digital advertising since Sept. 1. The liberals' goal: convincing lawmakers to back the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package aimed at combating climate change and expanding the social safety net.

  • The conservative aim has been to pressure Democrats to vote against it.
  • The parties have been touting their ad buys in the media, as they signal to lawmakers they will be given some protective air cover in next year's midterms, or face targeted attacks because of their positions.

By the numbers: Building Back Together, an outside group that takes unlimited donations and works closely with the White House, is the biggest spender on the Democratic side.

  • It has spent $8 million, part of the Democrats' $36.8 million in total spending.
  • For conservatives, a new group, Common Sense Leadership Fund, led by Kevin McLaughlin, former executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, has spent $9.4 million.
  • In total, conservative groups have placed about $19.1 million on broadcast, cable, satellite TV, as well as digital and radio platforms, from Sept. 1–Oct. 5.
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