If State Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski gets his proposed
legislation passed, this election season’s anonymous and negative campaign
mailers will be the last ones to arrive in mailboxes.
Zebrowski (D-New City) announced Thursday he would introduce legislation that requires disclosure on all political communications. All print, Internet, television and radio advertisements and communications that advocate for or against a particular candidate or issue would have to include a statement of disclosure of “paid for by” and the name of the source. The legislation is designed to end anonymous negative mailings.
New York is one of a few states without a campaign advertisement disclosure law. The proposed legislation would establish fines and penalties if a political communication has been distributed without a disclaimer.
“Candidates and political committees should not be allowed to hide behind negative and faceless ads,” Zebrowski. “We have seen a rash of attack ads in local Rockland elections that are shielded from criticism through anonymity.”
The proposed legislation would cover all types of political communication that support or criticize a candidate, election, ballot measure or issue. Candidates and political committees that pay for any type of political communication would be required to be clearly named on the advertisement.
“Campaign communications should be positive messages informing voters of the facts and those responsible for the mailings should stand behind that message,” said Zebrowski. “Voters deserve an open and transparent campaign process that lets them know where all parties stand.”
During this current primary campaign season, numerous anonymous and negative campaign advertisements have been distributed across the county for candidates in several races.