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The Boston Globe

Business

Election spending on local TV surges

Amounts so far significantly above total for 2008 races

With Election Day still more than six weeks away, the amount spent on political advertising on Boston television stations is already significantly higher than it was for the entire 2008 campaign, driven by a tight Senate race in Massachusetts and the presidential candidates’ feverish bid for electoral votes in New Hampshire.

Candidates, the groups that support them, and other special interest organizations have shelled out about $46 million on TV ads in Massachusetts this year — compared with $27.5 million in all of 2008 — in a spending spree that is expected to accelerate. Much of the money is coming from political advocacy groups taking advantage of a 2010 US Supreme Court ruling that eased restrictions on campaign financing.

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