Pro-Trump group reserves $26.6 million in ad buys in Florida, North Carolina

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The largest outside group supporting President Trump’s reelection is reserving $26.6 million in broadcast advertising in the battleground states of North Carolina and Florida, a sign that the president’s allies are ramping up to take on former Vice President Joe Biden in the November election.

The America First Action PAC has reserved the air time for ads to run between Labor Day and Election Day. The group will put $18.5 million behind the Florida campaign and $8 million will be directed to North Carolina.

America First has not released the content of the ads it intends to run.

Last week, the group announced its first independent expenditures of the 2020 cycle, saying it would make an initial investment of $10 million to reserve air time in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan. Those three former “blue wall” states are critical to Trump’s reelection efforts.

“This ad reservation is in addition to the $10 million buy we made last week and was included in our first round of decisions,” said America First Action president Brian O. Walsh. “America First is making the Florida and North Carolina reservations because we are confident we can secure inventory at the best possible rates in these crucial battleground states. We will make further decisions in May.”

Some of Trump’s allies have been grumbling that the outside group has not been spending enough to defend the president on the airwaves, particularly at a time when the largest Democratic super PAC, Priorities USA, is on the air with an ad attacking Trump over his response to the coronavirus outbreak.

However, the new ad reservations from America First indicate the group will have a heavy presence on the airwaves in key battleground states as the general election kicks into gear following Sen. Bernie Sanders’s (I-Vt.) exit from the Democratic race on Wednesday.

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