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Democrats Secure Early Advertising Slots in Crucial Senate Races

Democrats Secure Early Advertising Slots in Crucial Senate Races
Credits: The Hill

The battle for Senate control is set to intensify as Senate Majority PAC, the leading Democratic outside group for Senate races, kicks off its fall ad campaign with significant reservations in two pivotal states: Montana and Nevada.

In an effort to secure the reelections of Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), the group has earmarked $27 million for Montana and $36 million for Nevada, marking the start of a series of ad buys expected in the coming months.

The 2024 Senate landscape poses challenges for Democrats, with the retirement of Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) potentially providing Republicans with a route to Senate control, especially if they win the White House.

Democrats Secure Early Advertising Slots in Crucial Senate Races

Democrats Jon Tester of Montana, left, and Joe Manchin III (Credits: Roll Call)

To retain their narrow Senate majority, Democrats must defend key states, and Montana and Nevada are integral to this strategy. Senate Majority PAC’s early ad reservations aim to secure prime TV ad slots at lower rates, particularly in markets where ad space is likely to become scarce quickly.

Montana, despite not having a contested presidential race, is a focal point for ad spending due to its competitive Senate race. With multiple smaller media markets, the state provides opportunities for candidates and outside groups to reach voters effectively.

In Nevada, the competitive Las Vegas market, hosting House, Senate, and presidential races, is expected to witness a surge in ad pricing.

Senate Majority PAC is the first of the four major Senate outside groups to initiate ad bookings for the general election.

While the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the National Republican Senatorial Committee, and the Mitch McConnell-aligned Senate Leadership Fund are yet to make their moves, all are anticipated to make substantial ad spends in the coming months.

JB Poersch, President of Senate Majority PAC, expressed confidence in Democrats’ ability to maintain the Senate majority, citing strong incumbent senators and Republican opponents perceived as disconnected from voters.

The early ad buys in Montana and Nevada are part of a broader strategy to build momentum and position Democrats favorably for victory.

In addition to Montana and Nevada, other states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Arizona will play pivotal roles in determining Senate and presidential outcomes.

Arizona, in particular, could witness a three-way Senate battle if Independent Kyrsten Sinema decides to seek reelection.

The Montana Senate race has already seen substantial ad spending, with Tester and Republican Tim Sheehy airing TV ads. Two super PACs, aligned with NRSC Chair Steve Daines and Senate Majority PAC, are also actively participating in the race.

Tester’s impressive fundraising in the fourth quarter of 2023, totaling $5.5 million, underscores the competitiveness of the contest.

In Nevada, the 2022 Senate race was exceptionally close, with Senator Catherine Cortez Masto narrowly defeating Republican Adam Laxalt. Senate Majority PAC had reserved over $30 million in ad spending to support Cortez Masto.

The 2024 Senate race in Nevada features a contested GOP primary, with the NRSC favoring Sam Brown, an Army veteran, as their preferred candidate to challenge Senator Jacky Rosen.

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