How One Landslide Win on Election Day Cost Two Stations $10 Million

By Mark Joyella 

pic-kasich*304xx3648-5472-0-0In local TV, nobody likes a landslide. Close races are more intriguing to cover for the newsroom, and they are far, far more lucrative for the sales department. An analysis by the Cincinnati Business Courier concludes the runaway win on Election Night by Ohio Governor John Kasich cost two Scripps stations, Cleveland ABC affiliate WEWS and Cincinnati ABC affiliate WCPO $10 million in lost revenue:

“Political spending is about the footprint and the competitiveness of each individual race,” Scripps CFO Tim Wesolowski said during a conference call for Scripps executives to talk to investors and analysts about the company’s third-quarter earnings. (Some) races that we thought would be competitive never materialized. The best example of that was a lack of a competitive gubernatorial race in Ohio.”

Kasich’s wide early lead likely cost Scripps TV stations in Cleveland and Cincinnati more than $10 million, Wesolowski said.