Blago on the Tube

Think you've seen a lot of TV ads lately for Gov. Blagojevich? You're not alone. Nielsen Media Research yesterday released a national survey that found that our governor has run more ads than most candidates for governor this year. He's #3 on the list, with 11,388 spots aired between August 1 and October 15, a time frame that ignores the 3,582 spots he ran last April, May, and June in Chicago, and any downstate Springtime ads that may have run. By contrast, Republican Topinka has run just 4,096 spots, according to Nielson, and none last Spring, according to our research.

As ICPR reported earlier, TV news stations have largely abdicated coverage of campaigns and elections, devoting less time to candidates than to intros and teasers in a typical half hour broadcast. TV ads fill that void, and Blagojevich has used his enormous campaign warchest to define the terms of the campaign with these spots.