As he makes his final pitch to voters in the 50th Senate District, Democratic candidate John Mannion decided to inject some humor into the race.
Mannion released a new 30-second TV ad Tuesday that parodies the slew of negative commercials airing in the Syracuse area. His wife, Jennifer, and three children make appearances in the ad, which is airing on broadcast outlets in the region.
The ad is set as an "undercover" inquiry to get negative information about Mannion. Jennifer Mannion jokes, "I thought politicians were supposed to get rich, but John doesn't care about money."
That's a nod to the first television commercial released by Mannion in September in which he mentions that he knows central New York families are struggling, he's not a career politician and he doesn't want to be rich.
Quinn, Mannion's daughter, adds: "My dad says he wants to clean up Albany, but he didn't get Brady (his son) to clean his room."
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The commercial then summarizes Mannion as a devoted dad, a first-time who doesn't want to get rich from politics — and whose children don't listen.
"Wait, is that the worst we could find?" a narrator says as Mannion is shown winking at the camera.
In a statement announcing the campaign commercial, Mannion said central New Yorkers are "fed up with the nasty campaign attacks and the heightened rhetoric of political silly season."
There have been several ads and mailers in the 50th district targeting Mannion and his Republican opponent, Bob Antonacci. Groups supporting the Democratic hopeful have aired TV commercials and funded mailers critical of Antonacci. GOP-friendly groups have slammed Mannion in separate ads and literature.
The 50th district race is already an expensive contest, with the two campaigns spending nearly $900,000. That's not including the money spent by outside groups.
With Election Day one week away, Mannion wants to shift the focus away from the negative ads.
"Voters want public servants who will work for them, not professional mudslingers who just want to tear opponents down," Mannion said. "I have been amazed at the negativity, baseless attacks, and outright lies that have been hurled throughout this campaign. I am running for state Senate because I want to help my community and rebuild central New York."