When Are They Gonna Get to the Fireworks Factory?

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Oct. 13 2011 10:55 AM

When Are They Gonna Get to the Fireworks Factory?

Mitt Romney's presidential campaign has rolled out a new web ad today, a continuance of its successful, not-as-easily-parodied-as-Pawlenty's-videos "Obama Isn't Working" series.

It reminded me: Mitt Romney has yet to run a TV ad in the primary or caucus states for 2012. This is a bit of a surprise. Romney's 2008 ad campaign began on February 20, 2007.

Advertisement

His current strength in the polls (strength is a relative term) is baed completely on voter knowledge and earned media, like the presidential debates. Nobody's dropped an anvil on him yet; he hasn't dropped an anvil on anyone else. We must be reaching the end of that interzone now, as Rick Perry contemplates ads against Romney. But neither he nor Romney has piled up the sort of bank account that Romney did in 2007, when he introduced himself to voters with $42.3 million of his own money. For comparison, Romney only raised around $15 million in the last quarter, and Perry raised $17 million.

Why aren't Super PACS filling the gap? Some are trying -- Michele Bachmann had some outside help in Iowa, for all the good that did her. Erin McPike has a good explainer on why Jon Huntsman's clever plan of building support on the side with a Super PAC isn't working. All of this needs to be factored in when predicting who can surge or careen in Iowa or New Hampshire -- nobody's run any ads yet!

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough

So they added a little self-immolation.

Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War

Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore, and Schools Are Getting Worried

The Good Wife Is Cynical, Thrilling, and Grown-Up. It’s Also TV’s Best Drama.

  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 19 2014 9:15 PM Chris Christie, Better Than Ever
  Business
Business Insider
Sept. 20 2014 6:30 AM The Man Making Bill Gates Richer
  Life
Quora
Sept. 20 2014 7:27 AM How Do Plants Grow Aboard the International Space Station?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Sept. 19 2014 12:00 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? The Slatest editor tells us to read well-informed skepticism, media criticism, and more.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 19 2014 4:48 PM You Should Be Listening to Sbtrkt
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 6:31 PM The One Big Problem With the Enormous New iPhone
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 20 2014 7:00 AM The Shaggy Sun
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.