Tom Steyer spent $6.2 million for every minute of speaking time he garnered in Wednesday night’s Democratic presidential debate in Atlanta, which is just over $133,000 per second.
The California billionaire, who is self-financing his campaign, had 8 minutes and 24 seconds of speaking time, ranking next-to-last for the night ahead of entrepreneur Andrew Yang. Steyer finished dead last among the candidates in speaking time in his first debate in October.
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The dollar-per-minute figure is much likely higher, as current third-quarter campaign spending numbers are unavailable. To estimate this figure, the Washington Free Beacon combined the $47.6 million Steyer spent in the second quarter and the $4.7 million he spent on social media in October and November, as reported by Google and Facebook.
Steyer, who is worth an estimated $1.6 billion, faced tough questions about his wealth during the debate.
“Mr. Steyer, you have denounced the special interests that pour hundreds of millions of dollars into the political process to influence it,” debate moderator Ashley Parker said. “But in fact you have spent over $300 million of your own money in support of your political goals. How do you respond to critics who see you as the embodiment of the special interest?”
The $300 million figure cited by Parker likely includes the millions of dollars Steyer has spent on environmental issues across the country and his “Need to Impeach” campaign that ran television ads nationwide.
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