Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has spent more than $7.6 million on broadcast, cable, digital, and radio advertising in the Volunteer State ahead of the Super Tuesday primary for the 2020 Democrat presidential nomination in Tennessee.
The campaigns of five current and former rivals–Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Tom Steyer, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), former Vice President Joe Biden, and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg– and one PAC supporting a sixth rival, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) combined to spend a total of $2.6 million, $5 million less than Bloomberg alone.
The Tennessee Journal provided the details, citing a report from Advertising Analytics.
Bloomberg spent $5.3 million on broadcast television, $451,482 on cable television, $1.4 million on digital ads, and $474,000 on radio, bringing his total advertising expenditures in Tennessee to a little more than $7.6 million
In contrast, Bloomberg’s two leading rivals for the nomination who are still in the race, Sanders and Biden, have spent $567,167 and $178,838 respectively in the state.
Three candidates who dropped out of the race this past week, Klobuchar, Steyer, and Buttigieg, spent $816,859, $604,057, and $39,926 respectively.
One candidate who remains in the race, Warren, spent nothing from her campaign in Tennessee, but Persist PAC, which has endorsed her, spent $446,386.
A powerful tornado swept through Middle Tennessee early Tuesday morning, causing extensive damage and at least 22 reported deaths as of noon central time on Tuesday.
Polling locations in Nashville and Davidson County delayed opening until 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday. Voters at several polling locations in Davidson County did not open due to damage from the tornado, and voters in those election districts have been given alternative polling locations in the county.
While Real Clear Politics has reported on extensive polling undertaken in many of the thirteen other states holding primaries on Super Tuesday, March 3, political polling in Tennessee has been sparse.
A poll conducted by Swayable of 1,527 likely Democrat primary voters in Tennessee from March 1 to March 2 showed Biden with a one point lead over Sanders, 28 percent to 27 percent. The poll has a four percent margin of error, so at the time it was conducted, the two were in a statistical tie.
Bloomberg was in third place with 17 percent, followed by Warren in fourth with nine percent, Buttigieg in fifth with eight percent, and Klobuchar in sixth place with six percent.
Both Klobuchar and Buttigieg have dropped out of the race and endorsed Biden since that poll was initiated, so presumably some of their combined 14 percent would go to Biden on election day. However, Tennessee has early voting, so a good number of votes were cast prior to Klobuchar and Buttigieg withdrawing from the race.
Should Bloomberg finish in third place in Tennessee, as the Swayable suggests, after outspending Sanders and Biden combined by a little less than $6 million, the comparative advantage provided to his presidential campaign by his estimated $62 billion fortune will be diminished significantly in the primaries that come after Super Tuesday.