Published on Friday, 29 October 2010 10:16
With only days to go before Election Day, Republican candidate for Governor Bill Brady is now having to explain a major mix-up. Due to non-payment of bills, television stations all over Chicago and and at least one station further downstate pulled all Brady campaign ads from airing yesterday. WLS-TV, WMAQ-TV, WFLD-TV and WGN-TV have been among those claiming non-payment.
At a key time when most undecided voters finally make up their minds on who to vote for, Brady was not seen on Chicago television.
Brady had two separate excuses for the ad payment situation. He called the non-payment a "glitch," claiming that his campaign had paid a media buyer out of Washington, DC to run the ads and that the media buyer must have mistakenly forgotten to pay. He also claimed that the ad removal was on purpose, as the campaign was trying to run different ads in their place. (He quickly backed off of that excuse and stuck with the forgetful media buyer excuse.)
The media buyer firm, Sandler-Innocenzi, claims it was just following directions and was instructed to change the purchased ads around and that this was how they were instructed to do so.
Regardless of the true reason behind the non-payment, the mistake ended up costing Brady valuable air time and may have left questions in some voters minds. Brady has campaigned that he is more business-minded than his primary opponent Pat Quinn, and that he would be able to pay Illinois bills better than Quinn has. The timing of the non-payment and the lack of ads could not have been more embarrassing and frustrating for the Brady camp.
Not surprisingly, Governor Quinn has made numerous comments about the non-payment by Bill Brady (or Brady's people) in every appearance he has made since this was first revealed yesterday afternoon.
By the end of the day yesterday, the Brady campaign had supposedly settled up all of their debts with the Chicagoland television stations. WLS-TV & WFLD-TV both report receiving payments late yesterday.
Most stations have again been airing the Brady commercials in the previously reserved spots today. A few pro-Brady ads did run in the last day, but those were produced and paid for by third-parties, not the Brady campaign.
Unlike other television advertising, political advertising is always paid up-front. Past experience has shown that losing campaigns do not easily (or ever) pay for their already-aired advertising, so the rule was changed long ago to get the political ad money ahead of airing the commercials.