In late September, a conservative group opposing Donald Trump quietly tested four TV ads that aimed to weaken the former president by focusing on a central issue of the campaign: His myriad legal troubles.
One spot, which was surveyed before an online panel of Republican primary voters, declared that the indictments against Trump had “worn” him “down” and undercut his ability to win the election. Another said the trials presented “too much baggage” and warned that Democrats would “sensationalize” them to hurt the ex-president. The hardest-hitting commercial raised the specter that Trump would be convicted, leading President Joe Biden to “cruise” to reelection.
All of the ads shared one thing in common beyond the topic on which they focused. They all failed or backfired.
Three of the four actually boosted Trump’s support among the participants. One — a softer-touch spot that features a voter saying Trump’s trials “worries” him — had no measurable impact on Trump’s numbers. The unaired ads, along with nearly 260 pages of accompanying data analysis, were obtained by POLITICO.
Strategists with the conservative anti-Trump political action committee, Win It Back PAC decided to shelve the commercials. They remain unaired.
Win It Back