Harris, Warren Spent The Most On Twitter Among 2020 Candidates

Topline: Democratic senators Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris spend the most on Twitter ads, according to Twitter’s Ad Transparency tool, suggesting they’ll feel the biggest impact from Twitter’s decision to stop accepting ads from political candidates and campaigns next month.

  • Democratic candidates former vice president Joe Biden and South Bend, Indiana, mayor Pete Buttigieg applauded Twitter’s decision for removing the possibility of candidates running false ads, although Biden’s campaign said it was “unfortunate” that all political advertising—both true and false—was banned altogether.
  • Meanwhile, Trump’s 2020 campaign manager Brad Parscale said that banning political ads will “silence conservatives,” and added a comment about “biased liberal media outlets who will now run unchecked as they buy obvious political content meant to attack Republicans.”
  • The other campaigns did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Forbes.

Here is how much each candidate spent on Twitter ads since June 2018, according to Twitter:

  • Kamala Harris: $1.1 million
  • Elizabeth Warren: $902,200
  • Joe Biden: $617,100
  • Pete Buttigieg: $381,900
  • Bernie Sanders: $317,400
  • Tulsi Gabbard: $177,500
  • Amy Klobuchar: $87,100
  • Cory Booker: $51,200
  • Andrew Yang: $19,400
  • Donald Trump*: $6,566.60

*Trump’s twitter account, @realDonaldTrump, hasn’t promoted any tweets since June 2018. The figure represents spending from Trump’s official campaign account @TeamTrump.

Caveat: Twitter ad spending pales in comparison to Facebook. According to Facebook data, the Trump campaign spent $21.25 million on Facebook ads since May 2018. Warren, Sanders and Buttigieg spent more than $4 million each. Biden spent $2.8 million while Harris has spent $3.5 million.

News peg: Twitter announced on Wednesday that it would ban all political ads starting next month, a direct shot at Facebook, which has faced criticism for allowing the spread of misinformation from foreign actors, sometimes through paid ads, and for allowing politicians to lie in ads without being fact checked. 

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said that banning political ads outright would benefit incumbents and candidates who already get media coverage.