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Voters cast their ballot at a polling location
Voters cast their ballot at a polling location in Atlanta on Nov. 8.Demetrius Freeman / The Washington Post via Getty Images file

Ad spending reached $7.8 billion for midterms

Nearly twice as much was spent on ads in the 2022 midterms than in the 2018 cycle, per AdImpact data. 


The 2022 midterms saw a whopping $7.8 billion spent on TV, radio and digital ads, according to the ad tracking data AdImpact, nearly doubling the $4 billion spent on ads in 2018. 

The $7.8 billion spent didn’t top ad spending in 2020, which totaled $9.1 billion, but the jump from 2018 shows an overall spike in spending as candidates and outside groups have ratcheted up their fundraising. 

The figure includes ads that aired in statewide, congressional and local elections as well as ballot propositions. Overall, Democrats spent $3.4 billion on ads, while Republicans spent nearly $3.1 billion. Independent groups spent $1.3 billion, which mainly included ballot initiatives.

Tuesday’s Georgia Senate runoff brought an end to the 2022 election cycle, and the race was the most expensive in the country, with $338 million spent on the airwaves. Democrats dropped $194 million on the race while Republicans spent $144 million. 

And Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga., was by far the top spending candidate, spending $101 million on ads. 

The four major super PACs involved in congressional races were the top overall advertisers through the 2022 cycle. The GOP super PACs Senate Leadership Fund and Congressional Leadership Fund spent $221 million and $192 million respectively. Their Democratic counterparts, Senate Majority PAC and House Majority PAC, respectively spent $157 million and $144 million.