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TV ads are flying in 11 key state house races

steve carmody
Michigan Radio
Democrats are hoping to flip enough seats during the 2016 election to win control of the Michigan House of Representatives. Republicans are working just as hard to maintain their majority.

Democrats and Republicans are spending heavily on TV ad buys to sway voters in a handful of state house elections.

Democrats need to win 9 seats currently held by Republicans next month to take control of the state house.    

According to the Michigan Campaign Finance Network’s analysis of Federal Communication Commission filings and Kantar Media/CMAG ad tracking data, candidates and groups that support or oppose them have aired an estimated $529,000 in broadcast TV ads through Monday, Oct. 17th.   The estimate does not include cable TV ad buys.

Craig Mauger, the executive director of the Michigan Campaign Finance Network, says the money has been concentrated in 11 state house races, stretching from the Upper Peninsula to the Ohio border.  

“All 11 of these seats are currently held by Republicans and Democrats are likely making some effort to try to flip them,” says Mauger.

Mauger says Democrats started spending early on TV ads, but Republicans are making up ground.  He expects the money spent on advertising in 2016 will exceed the amount spent on state house races in 2014.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Radio since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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