Hinckley Plans to Make Splash with Ad Buy
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Republican Senate candidate Barry Hinckley plans to make a significant ad buy ahead of the November election, his campaign confirmed Monday.
Hinckley campaign manager Patrick Sweeney said Hinckley plans to pour at least $500,000 into television commercials for his run against first-term incumbent Sheldon Whitehouse, a number that would go a long way to helping the little known Republican gain name recognition.
His main roadblock, however, has been trying to prove that he can overcome a 22-percentage point deficit in the polls, according to a WPRI poll released earlier this year.
But Hinckley’s willingness to spend on an ad buy could provide a major splash for a campaign that has mostly relied on YouTube videos and earned media for its exposure (disclosure: the Hinckley campaign did make an ad buy with GoLocalProv earlier this year).
The significant edge in the polls and in the fundraising department has allowed Whitehouse to fly under the radar this election season. Without a Democratic primary and with President Obama at the top of the ticket in November, the seat has been labeled “safe Democratic’ by Rasmussen.
But that hasn’t stopped the two from sparring over issues this month.
Hinckley has already held two press conferences this summer outside of the Senator’s Providence office to criticize Whitehouse for his campaign finance reform efforts and the $2 million in campaign contributions he has received from political action committees (PACs) since taking office.
More recently, the two criticized each other over the amount of time they have spent Rhode Island. Records show Hinckley voted for the first time in the Ocean State in 2010 while the Hinckley campaign has criticized Whitehouse for spending the majority of first 30 years of life outside the state.
On more substantive issues, the opponents have also taken different sides. Hinckley has criticized Whitehouse for only recently releasing a jobs plan and for being part of a Democrat-led Senate that has failed to pass a budget for more than three years. Whitehouse meanwhile has criticized Republicans for failing to work with the Democrats, most recently pointing to his campaign finance disclosure bill, which had bipartisan support, but was believed to have been killed mostly for political reasons.