Congress

Maffei Ad Defends Family Against ‘Personal Attacks’

On the heels of a poll that shows he has lost the lead in his re-election bid, Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei has released a new TV ad featuring his wife and newborn daughter that slams his Republican opponent, John Katko, for making “personal attacks on my family.”

“Rep. Dan Maffei grew up in Central New York, on the East Side of Syracuse, and is committed to making the middle class in Central New York stronger,” said the congressman’s campaign manager Kane Miller, campaign manager. “He couldn’t be more proud of his wife Abby, her career, and their daughter Maya. He will continue to stand up for his family and middle class families across Central New York, and will never allow personal attacks from John Katko or anyone else about his family.”

The decision by Maffei and his wife to purchase a $700,000 home in the D.C. suburbs this past spring, coupled with the fact that Abby Maffei split her time between Syracuse and D.C. for her job at CARE, an international humanitarian group that fight global poverty, and that the couple’s daughter was born in a D.C. hospital have all become fodder throughout the campaign for Katko, who has questioned the congressman’s dedication to the district.

Maffei took issue with this line of attack during a TWC News debate in Syracuse this week, saying his wife and daughter should be ”out of bounds” - even though he has included them in his campaign literature and ads (like this one, for example). The congressman said the birth of his daughter in D.C. enabled him to “make every single vote for this congressional district while I was being a good  father.”

He said the baby is now in New York, where he is spending all of his time campaigning to keep the seat he first won in 2008, lost in 2010 (to former Republican Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle) and then won back (from Buerkle) in 2012.

Here’s the transcript of Maffei’s new ad, which starts airing this week on stations across NY-24:

AAN Hits Rep. Maloney With Drone Ad

Last month, the American Action Network, a conservative 501(c)4 run by former Minnesota Sen. Norm Coleman, announced it would spend $600,000 to try to oust Maloney during the final weeks of the campaign.

The organization is hitting the airwaves today with an anti-Maloney TV ad, which highlights the congressman’s controversial use of a drone to record his summer wedding to his longtime partner (and now husband) Randy Florke.

The Federation Aviation Administration prohibits the use of commercial drones, and Maloney got in hot water for (apparently) not being aware of that fact, since he sits on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Aviation Subcommittee, which oversees the FAA.

As of July, the FAA was investigating the use of the drone (AKA “unmanned aircraft) at the Maloney-Florke wedding in Cold Spring on June 21. But so far, nothing has come of that probe.

Here’s the script of AAN’s new ad, which the organization says will be accompanied by a “significant” direct mail campaign:

NEWS ANCHOR 1: The FAA is investigating a New York congressman over his…

NEWS ANCHOR 2: Video may violate FAA rules.

ANNCR: Sean Patrick Maloney. His committee overseas the FAA, but he still ignored FAA rules banning commercial drone use.

Maloney also supported giving Congress taxpayer-funded health care for life, while voting against efforts to stop Congress from flying first class on our dime.

Sean Patrick Maloney, looking out for himself, not us.

American Action Network is responsible for the content of this advertising.

Rep. Maloney’s New NY-18 Ad – A Tale of Two Bills

From the Morning Memo:

On the heels of Hillary Clinton’s appearance on his behalf in Somers yesterday, Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney is out with a new ad that features her husband – and his former boss – former President Clinton.

The ad, entitled “Agree”, stars the ex-president and GOP state Sen. Bill Larkin, who has crossed party lines to support the congressman’s battle against the Republican he ousted two years ago, former Rep. Nan Hayworth.

Maloney served as a senior advisor in the Clinton White House – a fact Hillary Clinton alluded to during her appearance on the congressman’s behalf yesterday.

“I’m here not only because I remember that young man – he looks pretty much the same as he did nearly 25 years ago – that I met all those years ago in New Hampshire, that worked in the White House,” the former first lady and ex-secretary of state said.

“I’m here because he’s been a good congressman for this district, for the people he has represented.”

Both Bill and Hillary Clinton have been stumping across the nation on behalf of Democratic candidates this campaign season – an effort that is widely viewed as chit-collecting in advance of her possible 2016 presidential run.

Aside from the fact that Maloney is a former employee, this race also has particular significance for the Clintons since it’s taking place in their backyard. (Westchester County).

Maloney’s campaign said there’s a “significant six-figure buy” behind this ad, which is running on NYC broadcast stations.

The NY-18 race has tightened considerably as Election Day draws near, and is now widely viewed as a neck-and-neck situation.

Hayworth recently infused a cool $1 million of her own cash into her campaign, while the DCCC pulled support from other Democratic candidates in New York to redeploy resources on Maloney’s behalf.

Here’s the script of the congressman’s new ad:

Announcer: “Here’s one thing Democrats and Republicans agree on, Sean Patrick Maloney has a record of bipartisan results. Creating Jobs. Protecting a Woman’s Right to Choose. Fighting for Veterans.

Republican Senator Bill Larkin: He has taken a position of let’s work together for the people we represent. He has been a staunch supporter of veterans.

President Bill Clinton: Sean Maloney’s got a better jobs plan. He’s got a better budget plan. He’s got a better education plan. He’s got a better plan for the future.”

Ebola Becomes A Political Football In NY-4

Less than 24 hours after the first Ebola case in New York City was confirmed, the disease has become an issue in the NY-4 race on Long Island.

The campaign of the Democratic candidate, Nassau County DA Kathleen Rice, issued a statement blasting her Republican opponent, former Nassau County Legislator Bruce Blakeman, for using Ebola as a fundraising tool.

This morning, Blakeman’s campaign sent out an email with the subject line “scary” that mentioned Dr. Craig Spencer, who fell ill after “nobly participating in Doctors without Borders,” and also solicited cash to keep the candidate’s attack TV ad portraying Rice as a rubber stamp for President Obama’s “failed policies” on the air.

“Patients are dying and people across the nation are terrified, and Bruce Blakeman sees it all as an opportunity to help his political campaign,” said Rice Campaign spokesperson Eric Phillips. “He’s politicized Ebola from the start, but this is beyond shameful.”

A Siena poll released earlier this week showed Blakeman gaining on Rice, thanks to the support of independent voters. But he’s still trailing her by 10 percentage points, which might be too much of a gap to close before Nov. 4. As with a lot of races this cycle, it all really depends on turnout.

NRCC Counters Clinton’s NY-24 Visit With a New Anti-Maffei Ad

Just in time for former President Clinton’s appearance this afternoon in NY-24 on behalf of Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei, the NRCC has released a new TV ad accusing the congressman of putting Washington interests ahead of the interests of his Central New York constituents.

“After decades in Washington, Dan Maffei has become the ultimate, self-interested politician,” said NRCC spokesman Ian Prior. “Maffei has given Central New York families nothing but Obamacare and higher taxes, then turns around and hands out $200,000 in taxpayer money to give lavish bonuses and gifts to his own staff. Under Dan Maffei Central New York loses while Washington D.C. wins.”

The new ad will air through Election Day in the Syracuse and Rochester broadcast markets. Maffei is facing off against Republican former prosecutor John Katko. The two candidates will be going head to head in a TWC News debate this coming Monday, Oct. 27. The debate will air in Syracuse and Rochester at 7 p.m. Those interested in watching who don’t happen to live in that viewing area can catch it online. I’ll be moderating along with TWC News’ Syracuse reporter Bill Carey and Rochester reporter Seth Voorhees.

Here’s the script for the NRCC’s latest attack on Maffei in NY-24:

Announcer: “For Congressman Dan Maffei, Washington comes first. So when Maffei showered his staff with outrageous bonuses, it wasn’t surprising. DC first, it’s the Dan Maffei way.

He voted to allow first class travel and special health care perks for Congress. But for us, Maffei voted with Pelosi to push job killing taxes and devastating Medicare cuts, jeopardizing care for seniors.

With Dan Maffei’s Washington ways, we lose.”

The National Republican Congressional Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising.

Conservative Group Launches 2nd Ad Against Bishop

American Action Network, a conservative 501(c)4 run by former Minnesota Sen. Norm Coleman that is involved in several of new York’s hotly contested House races, has released its second TV ad of this cycle targeting Long Island Democratic Rep. Tim Bishop, who is in a tight race with his GOP challenger, state Sen. Lee Zeldin.

The ad, called “The Game,” slams the veteran congressman for being under investigation by the House Ethics Committee for a pay-to-play fundraising scheme involving a constituent and also for paying his daughter more than $500,000 worth of campaign cash for fund-raising work since he took office in 2002.

““Tim Bishop has played Long Islanders for fools with his pay-to-play scandal and family cash ring,” said Emily Davis, spokeswoman for American Action Network. “Long Island families deserve better than a corrupt politician like Tim Bishop who even tried to mislead them about the fact that he’s still under investigation.”

The Republicans used the “daughter on the campaign payroll” attack against Bishop in the 2012 campaign, too. Bishop ended up winning that race handily, defeating his GOP opponent, businessman Randy Altschuler, who came considerably closer to defeating the congressman when he ran for the first time in 2010.

A September Siena poll showed Bishop 10 percentage points ahead of Zeldin, but as Election Day approaches, Democrats are stepping up their efforts to protect the congressman. Yesterday, former President Clinton headlined a rally on Bishop’s behalf, lashing out against “ideological extremism” in Washington, D.C. Zeldin responded to the former president’s appearnce by deriding Bishop as a “rubber stamp for the Obama/Pelosi agenda.”

This ad will run as part of AAN’s existing $1.5 million independent expenditure cable TV, online and mail campaign. The organization’s first ad – “Damn Good Idea” – has aired on cable TV since September 30. The AAN is also up on the air in NY-18 with an ad targeting Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney.

Here’s the script for the AAN NY-1 ad:

Announcer: “Politicians get a bad name because of back room dealers like Tim Bishop.”

“He paid his daughter half a million bucks for helping him collect checks. Bishop shook down a constituent for campaign cash. When a Long Islander needed a favor, Tim Bishop delivered but solicited $10,000 in return The Post called it a bribe. He’s under investigation. But that’s how Bishop plays the game. And why we would be better off without him in Congress.”

American Action Network is responsible for the content of this advertising.

Gibson Releases 5th Ad of NY-19 Race, ‘Clear Choice’ (Updated)

Rep. Chris Gibson released his fifth TV ad of his re-election battle in NY-19 with his opponent, Sean Eldridge – a spot that seeks to highlight the main differences between the incumbent Republican congressman and the Democratic newcomer.

The ad, “Clear Choice,” is a sort of amalgamation of arguments Gibson has made throughout the campaign. It touts the congressman’s record in public office and paints him as a dedicated local family man, while also swiping at Eldridge, depicting him as an inexperienced carpbetbagger who has run a negative campaign fueled largely by the wealth of his husband, Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes.

“Voters want a representative in Washington who they can trust. Chris’s lifetime of honorable service to his country and constituents in New York is a record we can be proud of,” said Gubson’s campaign manager Kevin Crumb. “Unfortunately, Sean Eldridge has shown that he’ll do anything to be elected to Congress – including district-shopping and spending millions of his personal fortune to misrepresent Chris’s record.”

Gibson has used this line of attack many times – including in the NY-19 debate that TWC News hosted yesterday and aired last night. (In case you missed it, you can find it here).

UPDATE: Eldridge’s campaign released a point-by-point rebuttal of Gibson’s ad, which spokeswoman Sophie Friedman, said proves the congressman is willing to “lie to his friends and neighbors” and continues his practice of “false, personal attacks against Sean.”

Team Eldridge notes that Gibson is a member of the “least productive Congress in history,” and therefore cannot honestly claim to be working hard on behalf of his constituents. It also points out that the congressman supports fracking and has received a 33 percent lifetime rating from the League of Conservation Voters.

What’s more, according to Eldridge’s campaign, Gibson has “refused to lead by example and speak out against the more than $5 million that has been spent by outside groups on his three bids for Congress.”

Here’s the script for Gibson’s new ad:

Female Narrator: “The story of Chris Gibson’s life of service starts here.

Male Narrator: But Sean Eldridge just moved here, filing to run for office before registering to vote.

Female Narrator: While Chris worked hard for us…

Male Narrator: Eldridge was deceiving you about Chris’ position on fracking, distorting Chris’s record of protecting our environment.

Female Narrator: Chris proposed to limit spending in this election.

Male Narrator: But billionaire Eldridge said no, supporting tax dollars paying for politicians’ negative ads.

Female Narrator: This election comes down to trust. The clear choice? Chris Gibson.

Chris Gibson: I’m Chris Gibson and I approve this message.

19th Congressional District Debate

Time Warner Cable News hosted an exclusive debate between the two candidates vying for the 19th Congressional District. Republican incumbent Chris Gibson, who has been in office for two terms, and Democratic challenger Sean Eldridge met for their fourth and final debate on Wednesday. They tackled everything from Ebola to the economy and campaign finance. Liz Benjamin was host with Nick Reisman and Michael Scotto as moderators. Watch the full debate, no log-in required!

Watch Here >>

Hayworth Drops Big $ In NY-18

From the Morning Memo:

With her re-match against Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney coming down to the wire, Republican former Rep. Nan Hayworth is going all in on her campaign.

This week, according to a source familiar with her decision, Hayworth invested an additional $1 million of her own money in her effort to oust Maloney, who defeated her two years ago.

That’s the most Hayworth has ever personally spent on any of her congressional bids, though she has dropped quite a bit of cash on her political aspirations.

So far this cycle, Hayworth has loaned her campaign $558,000. That’s a lot more than the $173,533 she invested two years ago, but as an incumbent House member, raising campaign cash was considerably easier.

Hayworth, an ophthalmologist by trade, loaned her campaign $500,000 when she first ran for office in 2010, defeating then-Democratic Rep. John Hall.

Now that Maloney is the incumbent and Hayworth the challenger, his fundraising has been a lot stronger than hers. She had brought in (including her own cash) about $2.1 million by the end of September, while he had brought in about $3.4 million.

Even with the additional money she’s putting into her campaign, the effort to oust Hayworth dwarfs the amount being spent to get her back into office.

To date, about $1.3 million has been spent by outside groups – mostly the DCCC and the House Majority PAC – against Hayworth, while about $200,000 has been spent in her favor and about $150,000 went toward negative ads that slam Maloney.

NRCC Launches 4th Anti-Bishop Ad in NY-1

And speaking of NY-1, residents in the congressional district at the tip of Long Island have been subjected to a veritable barrage of ads this campaign season, and the hits just keep on coming.

The NRCC has released its fourth ad attacking Long Island Democratic Rep. Tim Bishop, who is facing off against GOP state Sen. Lee Zeldin next month. Bishop is among the Republicans’ top targets this cycle, and the race may well be tightening, given the Democrats’ calling in of former President Clinton to headline a rally for Bishop tomorrow.

Here’s the script of the new ad:

Announcer: “Congressman Tim Bishop is still under investigation. Watchdogs name him one of Congress’ most corrupt. But what’s even worse?

Bishop spent twelve years backing higher taxes and reckless spending. Voting with Obama and Pelosi on every major piece of legislation. Even voting to give rights to foreign terrorists.

Congressman Tim Bishop, he’s made things worse.

We have a better choice. Lee Zeldin. The change we need.

The National Republican Congressional Committee is responsible for the content of this advertising.”