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Union Supporting De Blasio Focuses on Online Advertising

BY Miranda Neubauer | Friday, October 25 2013

A federal appeals court ruled Thursday that an independent conservative group supporting Republican Joe Lhota for New York City Mayor can accept unlimited donations because New York State's limit on donations to independent political committees is likely unconstitutional, as the New York Times reports.

But so far, with the general election a little over a week away, a majority of the independent expenditure spending in the mayoral race has gone towards online ads in support of Democrat Bill De Blasio.

People for a Better New York, associated with the AFSCME union, has spent $150,000 on online ads and Pandora ads in support of De Blasio. The other independent spending, from an EMT's Paramedics and Inspectors association, has been around $11,400 on leaflets and a poster supporting De Blasio.

In the past few days, AFSCME's De Blasio ads have been running heavily on the New York Times website. The ads link to a page where users can sign up to support De Blasio with their name, and click a link to find their polling place.

Outside groups have until midnight tonight to report spending over $1,000 as of October 21. Groups that have spent $5,000 or more in support of or against a candidate or ballot proposal must also disclose their contributors by that date.

People for a Better NY used a similar strategy in the primary election in support of Democrat John Liu, who came in fourth.