Ad Wars Heat Up in New York Special Election

Posted March 23, 2009 at 1:04pm

There is just more than a week to go before the March 31 House special election in New York’s 20th District, and the national Democratic Party is stepping up its effort to get nominee Scott Murphy elected to the vacant Democratic seat.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) is running its latest independent expenditure ad that sharply criticizes Republican nominee Jim Tedisco, a veteran lawmaker in the state capital of Albany and current leader of the state Assembly’s Republican minority, as an out-of-touch political insider.

Murphy, a businessman and investor, is a first-time candidate who casts himself as an outsider in his bid to replace former Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand, who gave up the seat in January after her appointment to fill the U.S. Senate vacancy created by Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton’s confirmation as secretary of State.

The DCCC ad is a hard push back by the Democrats after Tedisco and fellow Republicans spent a week trying to associate Murphy with the millions of dollars in bonuses paid to employees of financially crippled insurance industry giant AIG, which has received billions of dollars in federal bailout money. This was the focus of a web video released Monday by the National Republican Congressional Committee, the House Republicans’ campaign unit.