Tom Corbett will debut his first television ad tomorrow.
Two sources with knowledge of the buy said the Governor’s campaign will air on cable in the Philadelphia and Pittsburgh regions.
The ad will run on statewide cable in the next week.
Cable ads cost a fraction of their broadcast counterparts. It’s not clear whether the Governor intends to be on the air through the general election or, more likely, it could be an effort to prevent the active Democratic primary from hogging public attention.
A source told PoliticsPA that the buy was only $109,000 for one week, which is a light buy and in Altoona and Scranton, he’s only buying FoxNews
“Most of Corbett’s cable TV buy is on FoxNews, which is an implicit acknowledgement that he has trouble in his conservative base,” a Democratic media consultant told PoliticsPA. “That’s been clear from several public polls, but now it’s confirmed by Corbett’s own ad-buying strategy.”
Only one Democrat, businessman Tom Wolf, has launched a significant ad buy thus far. But several others are expected to be on the air in the next few weeks.
The ads could also be an effort to lock down Republican support. Compared to the contentious race for the Democratic nomination, the GOP primary for Governor has been a relatively quiet winter.
Corbett has just one opponent: conservative activist Bob Guzzardi. Guzzardi is not a statewide figure and has said publicly that he does not intend to put significant resources into his protest candidacy.
A January poll from Franklin and Marshall showed that only 23% of Pennsylvania registered voters think that Governor Tom Corbett has performed well enough to deserve a second term.
Corbett performs slightly better amongst registered Republicans: 38% think he is doing an “excellent” or “good job.” A mere 10% of Democrats think that he deserves reelection, compared to 42% of Republicans who want to give him a second term.