Election 2020: How Much Are Trump And Biden Spending On TV Ads?


  • Trump and Biden are ramping up the number of TV ads weeks before the November election
  • An analysis showed that more than $1 billion has been spent on TV ads for the 2020 election
  • Biden and his allies have outspent the Trump campaign in TV ads by more than $200 million

President Donald Trump and is Democratic opponent Joe Biden are ramping up the number of ads airing on TV just three weeks before the Nov. 3 election. But how much are the candidates spending on TV ads?

According to an NPR analysis, more than $1 billion already has been spent on TV ads for the 2020 presidential election. The latest ad spending data showed that these ads cover only 13 of the country’s 50 states. 

Biden’s campaign continues to outspend Trump’s campaign by over $240 million in six key states — Florida, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Arizona, Wisconsin, and Michigan. Meanwhile, Trump and his allies have spent much of its money in Georgia, Ohio, and Iowa — states he carried in 2016. 

A state-by-state breakdown shows Biden dominate the airwaves in Florida, where he and his allies shelled out over $154.1 million in TV ads compared to Trump’s $103.4 million. In Pennsylvania, the Democratic nominee spent over $121.5 million, while the president’s re-election campaign only spent $74.2 million. 

Trump dominates in Georgia, where his campaign has already spent $24.5 million compared to Biden’s $4 million. In Iowa, the pro-Trump campaign has spent $12.3 million in TV ads while his challenger only paid $3.3 million. 

However, numerous reports said the Trump campaign canceled its TV ads in Ohio and Iowa. But data provided by ad-tracking firm Advertising Analytics shows that they still had over $11 million reserved for ads in both states. 

Samantha Zager, deputy national press secretary for the Trump campaign, said the president and his allies are confident he will carry Iowa and Ohio in the 2020 election. 

“We have been talking directly with voters for years in these states about the success of President Trump’s America First agenda, whether through our top-tier ground game, in-person and online events, or utilizing digital, TV, and radio ads. Unlike Joe Biden, campaign ads aren’t the only way we know how to campaign,” Zager said in a statement. 

Trump is also airing an ad on COVID-19 that touts his speedy recovery. The pro-Trump ad, which first aired Saturday, also included a promise from the president that he will live “carefully” despite his return to hosting rallies this week.

Biden’s ads have mainly focused on his plans for the U.S. economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic. On Tuesday, he aired a new ad blasting the president for hosting coronavirus super-spreader events, CBS News reported. 

“He was warned but ignored the evidence, holding rallies indoors, turning the White House into a super spreader and contracting the virus himself,” says the narrator. “Now he claims he’s learned about COVID-19…But he hasn’t learned a thing.”

US President Donald Trump (right) accused the bipartisan debate commission of trying to “protect” his opponent Joe Biden Photo: AFP / JIM WATSON