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New Ad Highlights Gov. Cuomo’s Failure on Campaign Reform and His Decision to End Moreland Commission

April 11, 2014 | Adam Smith

April 11, 2014

Washington, D.C.—Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to end the anti-corruption Moreland Commission and failure to pass a comprehensive public financing system for elections are featured in a new television ad by Public Campaign Action Fund airing in the Buffalo and Syracuse television markets. The nearly $300,000 buy will air for nine days starting Saturday.

“Gov. Cuomo offered a bold plan to clean up Albany, but New York was left with just a fig leaf,” said David Donnelly, executive director of Public Campaign Action Fund. “The governor should live up to his own words and work with legislative leaders to pass a comprehensive public financing system for all state races as soon as possible.”

The ad is available online at: http://youtu.be/FoZSbGmbsX8.

In addition to the ad, Public Campaign Action Fund also released new polling showing strong support for a package of reforms including small donor public financing, contribution limits, increased disclosure, and election enforcement, as well as deep skepticism about Gov. Cuomo’s job performance. The polling was conducted from April 7-9 among 1,004 likely voters across three upstate media markets (Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse). The findings include:

  • Sixty-eight percent of New Yorkers support the package of comprehensive reforms, with just 18 percent opposed.
  • Even after an on-time budget, the Governor’s job approval numbers are upside-down, with 36 percent across the region saying he is doing an excellent or good job, and 63 percent saying he’s doing just fair or poor.
  • Likewise, Gov. Cuomo has a favorability issue with voters across the three markets, with 22 percent more New Yorkers viewing him unfavorably rather than favorably (30/52 percent).
  • On a series of traits about whether the Governor is viewed as “a reformer” or “has fixed state government,” he gets decidedly mixed results. Sixty-nine percent say that the phrase “makes decisions primarily based on politics” describes him very well or pretty well.
  • Lastly, fully 81 percent of New Yorkers in the three media markets believe corruption has stayed the same or gotten worse since Governor Cuomo was elected. Just 12 percent believed it had been reduced.

The ad, which begins airing Saturday, features a large plant being gradually trimmed down while a narrator says, “When Governor Cuomo introduced his ethics and reform plan, it was going to clean up Albany. But he let the rule limiting campaign contributions get cut. Then the commission that was supposed to investigate corruption in state government got cut. And the promise to reduce the influence of big money in all state races? All cut, except for one office. And now the governor says he’s proud of what’s been achieved? Gov. Cuomo, get back to work and deliver the reform you promised.”

Quotes from editorials written by local newspapers about Gov. Cuomo’s role in the recent budget process appear on screen throughout the ad.

“Governor Cuomo has a credibility problem in Central and Western New York because he hasn’t addressed the corruption problem in Albany,” said Donnelly. “It’s time for him to get back to work to produce the reforms he’s promised and New Yorkers deserve.”

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