Republicans aren’t yet willing to put their money where their mouths are on ObamaCare attacks, it seems.
The Republican National Committee backed its new New Year's-themed radio ads with as little as $15 dollars in some districts.
According to information from Democrats tracking media buys shared with The Hill, the RNC spent just $3,100 to air the radio ads on Tuesday and Wednesday across 36 markets, averaging less than $100 per market.
The RNC ads, which hit 12 Democratic incumbents and candidates, tie Democrats to President Obama’s erroneous claim that Americans could keep their health insurance under ObamaCare.
Against Rep. Nick RahallNick RahallWest Virginia is no longer Clinton country Solution needed: Rail congestion is stifling economic growth Lobbying World MORE (D-W.Va.), one of Democrats’ top vulnerable incumbents, the committee spent only $15. It spent another $115 to air the ad against Rep. Tim BishopTim BishopDems separated by 29 votes in NY House primary Flint residents hire first K Street firm House moves to vote on .1T package; backup plan in place MORE (D-N.Y.).
The RNC spent just $265 to air the ad in three markets against Rep. Gary Peters (D-Mich.), running for Senate there, and $580 to air the ad in six markets in Iowa, against Rep. Bruce BraleyBruce BraleyTen years later, House Dems reunite and look forward Trump: Ernst wanted 'more seasoning' before entertaining VP offer Criminal sentencing bill tests McConnell-Grassley relationship MORE (D), another Senate candidate.
The ads also hit Sens. Mark BegichMark BegichPerez creates advisory team for DNC transition The future of the Arctic 2016’s battle for the Senate: A shifting map MORE (Alaska), Mark PryorMark PryorMedicaid rollback looms for GOP senators in 2020 Cotton pitches anti-Democrat message to SC delegation Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm MORE (Ark.), Mark UdallMark UdallPicking 2018 candidates pits McConnell vs. GOP groups Gorsuch's critics, running out of arguments, falsely scream 'sexist' Election autopsy: Latinos favored Clinton more than exit polls showed MORE (Colo.), Mary LandrieuMary LandrieuMedicaid rollback looms for GOP senators in 2020 Five unanswered questions after Trump's upset victory Pavlich: O’Keefe a true journalist MORE (La.), Kay HaganKay HaganLinking repatriation to job creation Former Sen. Kay Hagan in ICU after being rushed to hospital GOP senator floats retiring over gridlock MORE (N.C.), Jeanne Shaheen Jeanne ShaheenRussian interference looms over European elections Restore funding to United Nations Population Fund Senators urge Tillerson to meet with Russian opposition activists MORE (N.H.), Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleyOvernight Regulation: Lawmakers look to delay labor board ruling Senate Dems offer bill to restore internet privacy rules Dem senator on Gorsuch: 'The dark deed is done’ MORE (Ore.) and Mark WarnerMark WarnerSchumer: Senate Russia probe moving too slowly Senate Intel Dem has ‘serious concerns’ on Russia probe GOP senator hits back at criticism of Russia probe MORE (Va.). In some states, like New Hampshire and Oregon, the RNC only launched ads in one media market, an indication they likely spent little on the attacks in the less competitive states.
It's not atypical for candidates and committees to launch low-dollar attacks early in the year, before voters seriously tune into political campaigns — but the low sum means their message is unlikely to hit many voters' ears at this point.
RNC spokeswoman Kirsten Kukowski dismissed questions concerning the size of the buy and suggested the ads were still hitting home.
“It’s funny, for all the talk about the size of the buy, the Democrats sure are reacting to our ads hitting them on ObamaCare,” she said.