Trump's campaign has plans to spend up to half a billion dollars on its digital strategy — and that means flooding Facebook with a lot of racist ads.
Trump’s reelection campaign plans to spend $400-500 million of his $1 billion campaign war chest on online, ads and much of that money will be used on racist Facebook advertising.
"We’re looking at a billion-dollar operation," Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said in a Wednesday interview with conservative host and Trump supporter Eric Bolling. Parscale explained that the campaign plans to spend nearly half of that money on digital advertising.
Much of that money is likely to be spent on racist Facebook ads.
The Trump campaign has already spent millions of dollars on such ads for the 2020 election. Between March and April of this year, an analysis of Trump’s spending found that the campaign has paid out at least $11.3 million for Facebook ads.
"Trump is using nativist language around immigrants in 54% of his ads," Axios reported recently, noting that Trump is using the same playbook from his 2016 campaign.
Trump's ads promote his idea for a wall on the southern border as well as his threats to shut the border entirely to stop all immigration. Those ads are disproportionately targeted toward senior citizens, who the Trump campaign apparently believes will respond to its racist advertising. A datamining analysis of public Facebook data by the firm Bully Pulpit Interactive showed that nearly half the money spent on Facebook ads targets voters 65 years old and up.
Trump won that demographic in 2016 despite losing the popular vote to Hillary Clinton, but since then, Republicans have lost ground and in the 2018 midterms, they only won senior voters by 2 points. The strategy of focusing on anti-immigrant policies and rhetoric backfired on the GOP in the 2018 midterms, costing the party control of the House.
And it could backfire in 2020 as well. Trump has never been popular with the majority of American voters. Out of 319 national polls during his first two years in office, only 1 has shown Americans approving of his performance. Trump's best hope of holding on to the White House might be trying to appeal to his base rather than the voters he has thus far been able to sway, but it's a risk that might not pay off for him.
Still, Trump's shown little interest in moderating his rhetoric or his policies to earn the approval of the majority of the American public, preferring instead to incite racial animosity. His campaign manager has now confirmed that he intends to put millions of dollars behind it.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.