Democratic groups launch $75 million digital ad effort to fight Trump

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to the media on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington upon his return from New York, U.S., November 3, 2019. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A progressive digital group on Monday launched a $75 million digital advertising campaign to take on U.S. President Donald Trump’s online ad juggernaut, one year ahead of the November 2020 presidential election.

David Plouffe, former President Barack Obama’s campaign manager in his 2008 presidential run, will advise the new campaign, run by nonprofit group Acronym and an affiliated political action committee (PAC) Pacronym.

Trump’s campaign has spent about $25 million on Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google so far this year, according to Democratic digital firm Bully Pulpit Interactive. That is more than the three top-spending Democratic candidates combined.

“This isn’t about matching Trump dollar-for-dollar online - this is about reaching voters where they are with the information they need to stay engaged, organized and mobilized to vote Trump out of office next November,” said Tara McGowan, founder of both Pacronym and Acronym.

“Democrats have been slow to evolve their strategies to meet the demand for online information. We are now ready to take the fight to Trump directly.” she said.

The effort, dubbed “Four is Enough” will include running ads across Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Hulu and Pandora. It will target voters in states where the race is expected to be hotly contested such as Arizona, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and North Carolina.

“Last minute multi-million dollar ad buys won’t be enough any longer,” Plouffe said in a statement on Monday.

“This election is already being fought and it’s being fought online. There will be no magic message, ad, or candidate. We are going to have to grind out this victory the hard way, and it will take time to learn how to build the most effective case to the right voters,” he said.

Reporting by Elizabeth Culliford; Editing by David Gregorio