Former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert has spent "several million dollars" over the last week to buy airtime to run television ads for his U.S. Senate campaign between now and the May 29 primary, he confirmed today.
"We’ve got several million dollars' worth of buys we’ve made in just the last week or so," Leppert said.
Last week, Leppert's campaign released a new ad, "Didn't Do," and said it would start airing on cable in major media markets in Texas. Leppert said Wednesday that the ad would soon air on broadcast stations, too.
Until now, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst had been the only Senate candidate to purchase airtime on the more expensive broadcast networks.
Leppert said that Friday's Belo debate served as a "kickoff" to the last stretch of the campaign and that most voters are only starting to pay attention.
"We’ve kind of laid it out, the whole thing, and made a big buy that literally took us to the last weekend of the election," Leppert said.
Leppert's campaign said last week that it had $4.7 million on hand and had raised nearly $1 million in the first quarter of the year, with $500,000 coming directly from Leppert.
"We have the resources to get the message out," Leppert said. "We feel very good about that.”
Leppert has said that internal polling shows that the race is between him and Dewhurst. This week, Dewhurst launched a new television ad and website devoted to attacking former state Solicitor General Ted Cruz, suggesting his campaign views Cruz as a bigger threat.
"We think when it comes down to it, we’re in a runoff with David Dewhurst, and we think that’s a good scenario for us," Leppert said.