United States election spending surpasses the budgets of many countries. The political ad battles for the upcoming presidential election, which is still fourteen months away, have already commenced. This early start indicates that we are on track for a historic level of campaign spending.
In 2012, it was considered intense when President Obama and Mitt Romney individually crossed the $1-billion spending mark. Fast forward four years and all candidates collectively spent over $2.6 billion, as reported by AdImpact, the leading firm tracking ad spending. (These figures encompass spending for the entire election cycle, including the year leading up to the election.)
However, these numbers now appear relatively modest. During the 2018 non-presidential election cycle, advertising expenses reached $4 billion. In 2020, spending skyrocketed to $9 billion, more than tripling the 2016 total, according to AdImpact’s findings.