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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

NewsFlash For David Axelrod: Team Obama Negative Spots- 37,022, Romney- 13,962

By Susan Duclos

Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod attempted to claim that the only reason the Obama campaign is seen, by a nearly 2-to-1 ratio, as running a more negative campaign than Mitt Romney is because Romney and pro-Romney forces are just making you think they are with their campaign ads.

Axelrod ignores the fact that Team Obama has run nearly three times the amount of negative ads, than Team Romney has.


Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod has a different theory. Perhaps, Axelrod said on Wednesday, the Obama camp is viewed as a purveyor of bitterness because Republicans are spending big money to get voters to think that Obama is running a negative campaign.

A Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll released on Tuesday suggests that voters think Team Obama is running a harsher campaign than Romney is. Twenty-two percent found the Obama campaign more negative than the Romney campaign, while 12 percent said Romney's was more negative.

“Partly, that's because the Romney campaign and their friends in the super-PAC world have just spent tens and tens of millions of dollars specifically on spots accusing Obama of running a negative campaign,” Axelrod said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. “So, I'm not surprised to see those numbers jump a little.”

It is true that both campaigns are averaging 90 percent negativity in their ads but the real reason why Americans see Obama's campaign as running more negative than Romney's, even though Romney has a larger percentage of ads criticizing Obama, is because of the sheer amount of ads Obama is running in comparison to Romney.

Via Bloomberg:

About 89 percent of Obama’s ads in the 14-day period ended July 9 carried an anti-Romney message and 94 percent of Romney’s ads criticized Obama, according to New York-based Kantar Media’s CMAG, which tracks advertising. The Democratic president’s campaign ran more than twice as many negative spots as Romney during the period, 37,022 to 13,962, CMAG data show. 

Since Axelrod is throwing out theories about why the public, 2-to-1, sees Obama as running a more negative campaign than Romney, let's throw out another theory.

Perhaps the seeing over 37,000 negative ads against Mitt Romney really is more negative than only seeing 13,962 negative ads against Barack Obama.

PS- Perhaps it is not the amount of ads made that are negative but the amount of times those ads are shown that gives the public the "impression" that Obama runs a far more negative campaign than Romney does.

[Update] That 2-to-1 figure in the poll is after  NBC/WSJ used a sample of +11 Democrats and with leaners +12 Democrats, imagine how many would have seen Obama's campign as more negative had they used a sample more representative of the actual electorate.