The official kickoff to presidential campaigns is traditionally considered to be Labor Day weekend, but nearly two-thirds of voters (64%) say they have already seen campaign ads about Mitt Romney, Barack Obama or both. However, only 16% of voters say they have so far seen “a lot of ads.”

Voters who have seen the most ads are predictably in what are considered to be battleground states — Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia. Nearly eight-in-ten (77%) voters in these states have seen or heard at least some ads and 24% have seen a lot of them.

Most (60%) who have seen or heard presidential campaign commercials this year say they have been a mix of positive and negative ads. Another 30% say the ads they have seen have been mostly negative, while just 7% say they have been mostly positive. This is comparable in both battleground and non-battleground states. Read More

Russell Heimlich  is a former web developer at Pew Research Center.