Nielsen Finds Obama, Romney On Top In Ads

Hillary and Rudy have some catching up to do. The presidential race for paid TV exposure for most of 2007 puts Barack Obama and Mitt Romney into top spots for their respective parties.

According to Nielsen Media Research, through Nov. 18 of this year for TV and Nov. 11 for radio, Barak Obama has tallied some 10,311 combined TV and radio commercials -- with the majority, 8,494, going into Iowa, in preparation for the Iowa caucuses next month.

Hillary Clinton was second at 7,839, with 6,260 also being spent on Iowa TV and radio stations. For the Dems: Bill Richardson totaled 7,305; Chris Dodd, 4,064; John Edwards, 2,642; and Joe Biden at 681.

On the Republican side, the story is Mitt Romney. He dominated all other candidates with some 17,849 commercials aired so far, more spots that all other candidates combined.

Ron Paul comes next at 1,454; then Fred Thompson, at 1,111; John McCain, 945; Rudy Giuliani, 881; Duncan Hunter at 88; and Tom Tancredo at 9. Nielsen said the survey didn't include Mike Huckabee, who starting advertising Nov. 26.



Romney also spent heavily in Iowa--some 7,469 commercials. But other areas timed for those upcoming primaries also witnessed activity: New Hampshire (2,237), Florida (2,053), South Carolina (2,697), and Vermont (1,495).

Nielsen also notes that through debate season, both parties have average between 2 million and 3 million overall TV viewers. There have been 10 debates for the Democrats; the best performing one was the most recent: Nov. 15 in Las Vegas. Aired by CNN, it earned an average of 3.9 million viewers. The least-watched debate was in Chicago back in the summer, Aug. 7, aired on MSNBC, which drew 960,000 viewers.

Out of eight Republican debates, the most-viewed contest was on CNN Nov. 28 with 4.2 million viewers. A month and a half earlier in Dearborn, Mich., on October 9, CNBC tallied 1 million viewers.

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