When it comes to campaign ads being run by the two candidates in the race for U.S. Senate in Florida, Gov. Rick Scott has a clear advantage over incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson. Since Scott entered the race in early April, his campaign has run eight different television spots statewide, compared to one digital ad released earlier this week by Nelson’s camp.
But it was announced Thursday morning that Nelson is receiving outside help from two groups — the Senate Majority PAC (SMP) and Priorities USA Action — which are launching a $600,000 digital ad campaign.
The campaign will feature two ads (see below). One will highlight Nelson’s opposition to efforts to privatize Social Security and Medicare, the other will focus on his efforts to fight the insurance industry for denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions.
“Bill Nelson’s legacy of service speaks for itself and he continues that service every day as he goes to work as Florida’s senator,” said J.B. Poersch, president of SMP. “From protecting Medicare and Social Security for Florida’s seniors to fighting for affordable healthcare for all Floridians, Bill Nelson has proven that he has what it takes to put partisan politics aside and deliver for Florida.”
“When some tried to privatize Social Security and Medicare, Bill Nelson stopped them,” says the announcer in one of the spots.
The ad goes on to highlight Nelson’s public service career.
“He served his country as an Army captain, astronaut and now — one of America’s most independent senators,” the announcer goes on to say. The reference to being an independent senator is likely in response to Scott’s attacks in campaign ads accusing Nelson of voting along party lines.
The spots will run statewide in both English and Spanish. They are in addition to a $2.2 million ad buy by SMP earlier this month in support of Nelson.
“The ads will appear on social media, Google search, and across websites and video properties where voters are consuming content, whether it’s YouTube playing on an iPhone, Pandora playing on an Echo, or Hulu playing on a smart TV,” the groups say in news release sent out Thursday morning.
But, Scott holds a clear advantage over Nelson when it comes to ad buys. Scott has spent $10.7 million on his eight television spots, while receiving more than $2 million in support from outside groups.
“Consider the irony of another liberal group proclaiming Bill Nelson is an independent senator,” responded Ryan Patmintra, the Scott campaign communications director. “This is yet another ad of Bill Nelson failing to highlight a single legislative accomplishment. At some point, can anyone point to anything Bill Nelson has done on Earth?”