Advertising intensifies as election draws near

Jared Clark

Jared Clark

With election day drawing nearer and nearer, it seems no one is exempt from the increase in advertising in recent weeks.

It is no secret that political advertising is an important part of the campaign process, but it has never been as evident in South Dakota as this year. With a Senate and House race that are statistically tied in some polls, candidates are trying everything they can to swing those crucial votes to their side.

The negative tone of some political ads has caught the attention of students on campus. SDSU Music Education Major Mark Diischer is frustrated with what he’s seen. “[Political] advertising is a waste of money because it serves no real purpose, only to aggravate the political situation by attacking the people [running]. With every new advertisement … comes [an] attempt to trump it. Ironically, advertising only exists to serve itself.”

In the states closest race, Democrat United States Senate Incumbent Tim Johnson and Republican Representative John Thune have been focusing their resources on television and radio ads. Because this particular race is so close, and because of its national importance, candidates are investing millions of dollars into various advertising to give them the edge.

A recent Argus Leader/KSFY poll conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, Inc. of Washington, D.C., showed Johnson with 44 percent and Thune with 43. The margin of error for the poll of 800 people was 3.5 percent, putting Johnson and Thune in a statistical tie going into the five-week stretch before November 5.

Mike Rounds, Republican Candidate for Governor says he is running a variety of advertisements, but feels that campaigning personally is the most effective. “I’m meeting as many people as I can, and as many different groups as I can. I believe that personal one on one campaigning is the most effective.”

Democratic gubernatorial challenger Jim Abbott has been running a number of advertisements of late, combined with increased personal appearances. to try and close the gap between him and his challenger.

The Argus Leader/KSFY poll for the South Dakota Governor’s Race showed Mike Rounds with a 19 point lead over Abbott (Rounds 51, Abbott 32).

Polling results of the United States House Race between Democrat Stephanie Herseth and Republican Governor William Janklow showed a 7 point lead for Janklow (Janklow 47 percent, Herseth 40).

This increase in support is significant for Janklow, as the numbers in that race had been at or near the same for the past several months. The August Keloland TV poll had Janklow at 41 percent and Herseth at 44.

Publicity from the fires and the beginning of a television ad campaign for Janklow have likely contributed to his increase in support.

#1.887982:1694389386.jpg:ads.jpg:Senior Jessica Schutz watches an advertisement touting Senator Tim Johnson?s support of South Dakota farmers. While this particular ad doesn?t venture into the negative campaigning many politicians are being criticized for this election cycle, spots of both negative and positive nature frequent the air waves in efforts to influence the outcomes of South Dakota?s several close elections.:Theanne Tangen