While most of the Democrats running for president are focusing on the early-voting states, Mike Bloomberg is spending millions to take the fight to President Trump in battleground states. The former New York City mayor is outspending the president's campaign on television ads in several key states.
Since jumping in the race in November, Bloomberg has spent $24 million in Florida, and nearly $11 million in Pennsylvania. He's also about $8 million in Ohio and North Carolina, $7 million in Michigan, and more than $4 million each in Arizona and Wisconsin, all of which are states Mr. Trump won in 2016 and will likely need to win again in 2020.
Since November 2019, the Trump campaign has spent some on TV ads in the battleground states of Florida, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Ohio, but none of the buys have topped $13,500. As an incumbent, he has no substantial competition for the GOP nomination.
While a number of Bloomberg's ads have focused on his own record as the Mayor of New York and his presidential bid, he has also been taking direct aim at the president.
The Trump campaign dismissed Bloomberg's spending in the battleground states, saying he "will never have anything to show for it."
"Mike Bloomberg can light his money on fire if he wants to but he will never have anything to show for it," said Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh in a statement. "It doesn't matter which Democrat comes out of their nasty primary, President Trump's campaign will be well-funded, well-organized, and ready to carry the President to re-election.
Just last week, Bloomberg's campaign rolled out two TV ads going directly after Mr. Trump. In one, he highlights reporting that the president disparaged members of the military.
"The Pentagon — President Trump arrives for a briefing by top military leaders. Trump explodes — attacks the war heroes in the room as losers and a bunch of dopes and babies," the narrator says in one ad. "Many in the room had risked their lives for our country. Soldiers, heroes attacked by an erratic and out of control president," he continues in the 30-second clip. According to the campaign, the ad is running nationwide.
On Thursday, a Bloomberg ad aired in a segment on the cable TV show frequently viewed by President Trump, "Fox and Friends," followed by an appearance by Bloomberg's campaign manager, Kevin Sheekey, who then slammed the president, arguing he weakens the country by attacking the military.
In a separate ad airing in 27 states, including in multiple battlegrounds, Bloomberg is also urging lawmakers to remove President Trump from office. "And if they won't do their jobs, this November, you and I will," he says.
Bloomberg and Mr. Trump are also spending big on the most expensive ad time all year in television, the Super Bowl. Both have dropped $10 million on 60-second ads during the game. Mr. Trump will also be doing a halftime interview with a favorite Fox host, Sean Hannity. Fox is airing the Super Bowl this year.
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