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Joe Biden Has Spent More on TV Ads Than Any Candidate in History

Democratic presidential nominee surpasses Michael Bloomberg’s total spending

Joe Biden has surpassed Michael Bloomberg to become the U.S. political candidate who has spent the most money spent on TV advertising, according to the tracking firm Advertising Analytics.

The Biden campaign’s $45.2 million advertising spend this week brings his 2019-20 total to $582.7 million, finally surpassing Bloomberg’s astronomical expenditure from the Democratic primary race earlier this year.

Biden’s opponent, incumbent Donald Trump, spent $15.3 million in traditional TV ads this week, bringing his overall spending to $342 million. As Advertising Analytics previously reported, the vast majority of that spending has gone to battleground states like Florida, Pennsylvania, Michigan and North Carolina.

A recent New York Times report found that ad spending for the 2020 presidential election has more than tripled what Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump shelled out at the same point in the 2016 race. With on-the-ground campaigning limited in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the two campaigns have spent $1.5 billion on ads, compared to $496 million four years ago.

The Trump campaign’s lead in digital advertising has also narrowed in recent months, the Times noted. Whereas Trump once easily outspent his opponent on Google and Facebook ads, the two campaigns have reached “rough parity” in the weeks leading up to Election Day.

Last week, Trump spent $14 million on Facebook and Google to Biden’s $12.7 million, Advertising Analytics said.

Spending on the 2020 election is expected to reach a record-shattering $11 billion by Nov. 3, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. The presidential contest alone is expected to cost nearly $5.2 billion.