Trump campaign spends $2.5M on ads in Pennsylvania, Indiana

Story highlights

  • The spots appear to signal a new willingness to spend more money on advertising
  • These are significantly larger initial buys than what Trump spent in previous states

(CNN)Donald Trump's campaign on Thursday dropped a pair of new ads in Indiana and Pennsylvania as part of a nearly $2.5 million cash injection in the two upcoming primary states.

The spots, which feature Trump and one of his sons, appear to signal a new willingness on the billionaire candidate's part to spend money on advertising to clinch victory in crucial primary contests.
    Trump has dedicated more than $1.4 million in Pennsylvania markets for ad time across the state, and slightly north of $1 million in Indiana, according to advertising records from Kantar Media/CMAG, a company that tracks political advertising.
    Those are significantly larger initial buys than what Trump spent in previous states. The billionaire spent a total of just $462,000 in Wisconsin -- where he lost badly to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz -- and aired no television ads in his home state of New York, which he won resoundingly.
    The spending boost comes as Trump is regearing his campaign for what his aides are calling the next phase of his expectations-defying bid -- one in which Trump will spend more money and make a more targeted play to maximize the number of delegates he can lock in before the Republican convention this summer.
    One of the two ads, which began running Thursday in Indiana, features Trump's son, Donald Trump Jr., and appears aimed at softening the brash billionaire's image while also bolstering his credentials as a tough negotiator.
    In the ad, which features images of Trump with his grandchildren, shows the younger Trump conceding that "in many respects" his father is "a tough guy" before noting that he shows a softer side with his grandchildren.
    "Growing up, my brother, sister and I had to really know what we were talking about before bringing him any kind of proposal," Trump Jr. says in the ad. "He may be a little less tough on his grandchildren right now, but it's that toughness that I want renegotiating trade deals with China and Mexico."
    The front-runner's son continues: "It's toughness that I want keeping me and my family and your family safe. My father will make an incredible president."
    The second ad, which began airing Thursday in the Pittsburgh media market, features Trump looking directly into the camera and proclaiming that "Washington is broken."
    "The truth is too many politicians are controlled by special interests and lobbyists. That's going to change quickly," Trump says, before listing off a myriad of campaign pledges from cutting taxes to building a wall on America's southern border.