IT'S OFFICIAL: CROTON DEMS ENGAGED IN UNFAIR CAMPAIGN PRACTICES
Fair Campaign Practices Committee Rules on Croton United Complaint Against Croton Democrats; finds that GALLELLI, SLIPPEN AND PUGH/Croton Democratic Committee ENGAGED IN UNFAIR CAMPAIGN PRACTICES
TEXT OF COMMITTEE'S FINDINGS FOLLOW:
The Westchester County Fair Campaign Practices Committee met on November 11, 2014, to hear the complaints of Virginia Calcutti, Croton United candidate for Village Trustee in Croton, against the Croton Democratic Committee and Trustee candidates Ann Galleli, Brian Pugh and Maria Slippen. Ms. Calcutti was represented by Roseann Schuyler. The Croton Democratic Committee was represented by Ann Gallelli and Richard Masur.
COMPLAINT 1: Ms. Calcutti complained that the Democratic candidates for Trustee submitted a letter to the editor that stated, in part, “Our opponents’ main financial supporters—the Croton Republicans—also backed the previous administration that oversaw an average 7.37% yearly tax increase during the four years they were leading. Whose leadership would you prefer?” Ms. Calcutti stated that Croton United received no financial support from the Croton Republican Committee, as the statement implied.
FINDING: Unfair. The committee found that a reasonable interpretation of the term “the Croton Republicans” would be that it referred to the organized Republican Party in the village, and not simply enrolled Republicans, and the statement was therefore misleading.
COMPLAINT 2: Ms. Calcutti complained that a mailer sent by the Croton Democratic Committee included the statement that (Croton United has) “consistently hidden the fact that they are mostly supported by Republicans,” when in fact Croton United had never hidden its contributors, and included a link to its financial disclosures on its Web site.
FINDING: Unfair. The committee found that there was nothing presented to substantiate the charge that Croton United had hidden the source of its funding.
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