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Harp Ad Targets “Old Boys Club”
by Staff | Sep 6, 2013 2:09 pm
Posted to: Campaign 2013
Just days before voters head to the polls, Toni Harp Friday released a video ad that plays up her quest to be New Haven’s first female mayor—and dismisses her three male opponents as an “old boys club.”
The 30-second spot went up on YouTube on Friday, posted to an account belonging to Yvonne Manning-Jones. In the video, shots of Harp addressing the camera are interspersed with newspaper-style graphics and footage of the candidate in action.
Click the video to watch.
Harp is competing with Kermit Carolina, Justin Elicker, and Henry Fernandez for the Democratic nomination. The three men’s likenesses appear in the video grouped together in black and white.
Democrats head to the polls on Tuesday, Sept. 10 to vote in the primary. All four candidates have online video or radio ads.
“Lately, my opponents have gotten a little desperate,” Harp begins, in her video. “They’re attacking my family and not focusing on the issues,” she continues, referring to campaign criticisms of unpaid taxes by Harp’s late husband and housing conditions at buildings run by her son.
Harp goes on to name some of her accomplishments as state senator: gun safety laws, and funding for after school programs.
Text identifies her as the “first African-American woman to co-chair appropriations committee.” If elected, Harp would be New Haven’s first female mayor.
“If the old boys clubs thinks they’re going to distract me from making our streets safer, improving our schools and creating good jobs then boy, are they wrong,” Harp concludes with a smile.
A video spot made by the Carolina campaign debuted earlier this week. Click to watch.
The Fernandez campaign Friday announced a new 30-second radio ad, featuring actor Danny Glover, who has campaigned twice in town with Fernandez.
In the ad, Glover says Fernandez “has the right experience to lead New Haven. He was on Obama’s transition team, he helped register 400,000 African-American voters, he brought IKEA and Gateway Community College downtown.” Click the arrow below to hear it.
The Elicker campaign also has a radio ad on the airwaves, as of yesterday. Elicker’s 60-second spot names three reasons to vote for him. “Here’s what sets me apart,” he says. “First, clean elections. ... I chose to participate in public financing, I won’t owe favors to any special interests. Second, the right experience. As an alderman I’ve fought for increased public safety, improvements in education and reining in irresponsible spending. Third, ... I’ve released 75 specific solutions to our city’s challenges.”
Click the arrow below to listen:
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Sexism, and it needs to be stopped. Also we’ve had 20 years of white government and that can’t continue.
Harp’s ad makes me sick. More of the same DeStefano rhetoric. The reason all the other candidates are talking about your family Harp is because your family is a reflection on YOU!
God help us if she becomes Mayor.
Stay in the Senate. Better yet, find a new career.
Part 1 of 2
The Harp campaign this season has, for me, been a startling and dismaying development. I am someone who has consistently voted for her for state senate over the years, content to just go with the flow, never really paying much attention, knowing she had an important position in Hartford and that this likely was good for New Haven.
When I started watching her run for mayor, I was hugely surprised at how weakly she came across as a candidate, how worringly vapid and generalized her talk was—she would speak warmly, but not as if she had much of a grip on the topic at hand. Then came disclosures of all the *stuff*—the unpaid family taxes, the bad maintenance of family rental properties, her cluelessness about anything from living conditions in Newhallville to the name of Yale’s vice president for New Haven affairs, her support for expanding Keno into city restaurants and bars, and so on.
She comes across as a very nice woman. In a substantative sense, she comes across as well-meaning but lacking.
Part 2 of 2
Standing out especially glaringly, though, has been the Harp campaign’s seemingly incessant attempts to ram this candidate down people’s throats—to try to make it seem as if her election is inevitable, to try to portray other candidates as illegitimate (especially in regard to the general election in November), to try to make it seem as if we all just better get with the program, or else. To me, anyway, it has been a huge turn-off. Really, I do not see this going on in the same way, qualitatively or quantitatavely, in the other campaigns.
The recent last-minute ramping up of the aggressiveness (attacking the Democracy Fund, outright distorting what Elicker had said about the Morris Cove fire station, now playing the gender card) just makes it all worse. I had been thinking that perhaps all the bluster was overcompensation for Toni’s repeated lackluster performances, that all the force-feeding seemed to be evidence of insecurity—evidence that her campaign and supporters realize at some level that they have a flawed candidate, and need to create distractions. Now, along with others, I wonder if she is running scared.
I also wonder if Toni Harp will regret, in years hence, the damage to her reputation this campaign will have caused.
Any idea how much money AFSCME has put into the vote-for-Harp ad blitz that greeted me online today? I mentioned this on another page: even though there’s nothing illegal about it (and, many would argue with some force, nothing unethical about it), I’d be interested to know how much “independnent” union expenditures and donations to Harp-aligned aldermanic candidates have effectively added to her war chest.
In national and state-wide elections, where typcially see a more traditional Democrat v. Republican contest, “independent” corporate/union/PAC expenditures might well balance each other out. But in a municipal election, there can be a dramatic imbalance where labor still has money and an incentive to spend, while other big-money interests aren’t really involved. That’s particularly so where all the candidates (save Carolina, maybe) are, relative to the rest of the country, pro-Labor progressives. You’ll see large individual contributions from contractors to Henry, sure, but it’s not like the Chamber of Commerce is going to start taking out ads for him.
Harp is right people should spend more time pointing out how she herself failed to pay taxes for so many years and less time talking about how she lives off the money generated from her family’s company even if they the biggest tax scofflaw in the state and she voted to forgive the taxes while in the senate. concentrate on her not even paying her own taxes will you please.
Harp is reminding me a little bit of Ozzy Ozbourne.
A political mess in real life, but boy can she bite the heads off of bats when given her properly lighted stage.
She should stay in Hartford, or better yet go home. I don’t care if she would be the first woman mayor, she is not one that I would vote for. If my taxes were unpaid for my car would have the boot put on it. We shoul give heer the boot.
This is ironic since Harp, herself, is a member of the old boy’s club. Hence the attacks against someone running as a reformer (Elicker). Otherwise, wouldn’t she ally herself with said reformer if she really wanted to distance herself from her buddies at the capital.
Old Boys Club? Are you kidding me? OneCity Henry aside, she is the biggest Old Boy of the four by far.
Ok Henry the Glover commercial kinda sucks. It detracts from you. And I am not just saying that to dis you I am being honest. You are an ok candidate, run on who you are not who glover is and you will step up a bit. Not that I should be suggesting things that will help you. But I try to be honest.
Justins..was good to the point and informational.
I liked Kerm’s because it targets our young voters and that no matter which candidate it is, is a good thing.
Harp REALLY! Bethany Harp that lives in a mansion and has Corporations money being funneled into her campaign by the real old boys club is calling the three male candidate the old boys club for the sole fact that they are men? Two of whom are black men? Harp the only candidate that has the old white men politicians endorsing her. That is just silly. Again Harp I think the New Haven voter are far smarter than that. This race has NOTHING to do with your sex. trust me. It has to do with your ability to be mayor…post destefano! If you can not handle your own life how can you handle a city that is in trouble. If the city was healthier I may say lets give her a shot. But it is not healthy it is a mess. If you are so down on the old boys club I think you need to start sending back about 80% of your donations to suburbia, you know the out of towner money you got from the real old boys club.
A candidate acting “preeeeety desperate” is one who plays kind hearted matriarch to the masses for months doing nothing but acting abused THEN draws her claws AFTER the debates close because she doesn’t have the stomach or mental chops to deal with rebuttals in person.
How about a video saying, “Okay, I FINALLY read the budget. Here’s what I think we should change, and why.”
One of the oldest political subterfuges in the book— shift blame to your opponents, while you attack who you really are.
If there is any doubt to Harp’s membership in “The Olde Boys Club”, just look at the Balls of this ad.
Alternative universe truth telling ad…
Harp, “I’ve been chair of the appropriations comittee and yet I’m too much of a sap to know that my husband owed $1M to the state of CT. Please appoint me mayor because I’m charming.”
I now believe that Harp believes she lives in an alternate universe where she says something and voters actually believe her. Harp is the oly candidate to be endorsed by any of the old boys (Martin Loney, Matt Nemerson, Dan Malloy and even Hank Parker), but she accuses the other candidates (all of whom are much younger than she) of being old boys. Insanity.
Harp wants it both ways. She repeatedly, unabashedly and unapologetically runs on an “elect the first woman Mayor” platform, but then cries sexism when someone brings to light her terrible inadequacies and awful family business. Trumpeted that you are a woman, and then hide behind an imaginary cloak of sexism somewhat no one holds you accountable. This does not tremendous disservice to women everywhere who actually do face sexism on a regular basis. Harp should be ashamed of herself.
This is the same candidate who waited for a real old boy (Jack Keyes) to drop out of the race before she would even contemplate a run. She has no history of taking on the real old boys. In fact, only Carolina has a history of standing up to the political establishment. Why the Harp campaign would allow itself to be led by Jason Bartlett, a perennial loser and Republican at heart, is beyond me.
Harp is the worst candidate in the race. Lately, she has been attacking all the other candidates. However, if someone attacks her, he is a bully or is sexist. Elicker, Frenandez and Carolina simply respond to the substance, or lack thereof, of Harp’s attacks. Perhaps they should say something like this, “Harp is attacking me because I am a man. Her bullying tactics would not be used against a woman, so that is clear evidence that she is sexist. Although her criticisms are based on things that I have actually said, done or have knowledge of, that gives Harp no right to crticisize me because I am a man and I want to be treated with the respect that a man deserves.”. See how ridiculous that sounds? I can’t wait for next Tuesday.
If Harp thinks she will be Mayor of New Haven, then boy is she wrong! Did it get lost on anyone that with two black men in the race, she used the term “old boy” to describe them? If Toni were White, this would cause quite the stir given the racial connotation of the word boy when referencing black men. But again, Harp feels entitled to say or do anything she wants whenever she wants. She should apologize to Carolina and Fernandez for using such racially coded language. The Harp campaign is a joke. It’s imploding more everyday because she is an awful candidate, with fuzzy messaging, incoherent mumblings and a penchant for avoiding the truth. On September 10, I will be Dotting in another candidate’s name so hard i might rip a hole in the ballot!
It is very funny that Toni Harp, perennial insider for the last 30 years in the corrupt New Haven DTC - is now running against the “good old boys club.” She is the oldest of good old boys in office - aside from Martin Looney - maybe. Her antiquated view of politics and public policy reflects her age. It’s time to blow dust off and put somebody in who has stamina, energy and whose vision is not limited to what her donors want.
Tony harp’s old boys club comments are right on; there’s no question that her 3 male competitors talk the same language - with negative attacks against her son and late deceased husband; don’t they have any shame ? They been harping(no pun intended), on this for months ; don’t they have anything constructive or new to bring to the table ?
They really don’t; other than Carolina, Fernandez and Elicker have always been in John Destefano’s camp. As an Alderman, Elicker voted with the machine. When kerekes had a chance to change things up during the last election cycle - advocating for less government - lower taxes,........, where was Elicker? He was supporting John D.
With Fernandez, you get much of the same; a staunch supporter of Destefano and company; always looking to spend the tax payers money, at any cost- as long as it fulfills his own socialistic agenda, never giving any consideration to the tax payer that foots the bill.
How can someone whose biggest issues are taxes and spending vote for Toni Harp? She hasn’t given any concrete ideas on how she’d cut spending in New Haven(beyond getting rid of the LCI), and it’s especially true given the fact her probability of taking on the city’s union pensions is near zero. Not to mention you have her have time as chair of the appropriations committee in Hartford to also look upon, where even a left leaning group characterize the budget as ‘full of gimmicks’
IN RESPONSE TO MADCAP,AT LEAST HARP HAS THE GUTS TO TAKE A STANCE; I ALSO THINK THAT LCI IS A GOOD PLACE TO START; THEY HAVE RECKLESSLY SIPHONED CITY RESOURCES FOR YEARS;MOREOVER,THEY ARE A PURE TAX GUZZLER WITH A WILD WEST ATTITUDE. RATHER THAN TO ENCOURAGE UNITY AND COOPERATIVENESS, THEY OPENLY PIT LANDLORD AGAINST TENANT THAT FURTHER SPLIT THE PARTIES APART.
ON THE OTHER HAND, ELICKER AND FERNANDEZ(ESPECIALLY FERNANDEZ), WOULD EXPAND THE DEPARTMENT AT THE TAX PAYERS EXPENSE.
This. Is. Hilarious. Harp’s ad is - once again - insulting to women. To suggest that we should vote for her because she’s a woman is ridiculous. Also, SHE is the one who is part of the old boy’s club - endorsements by major unions, senators, the governor. C’mon… It is infuriating to constantly see the old boy’s club incessantly push this candidate down our throats when she is clearly unqualified!
Unfortunately, Carolina’s ad is entirely TOO targeted to young black voters and it excludes 90% of the population. Sorry, that 10% that he is targeting is likely not to vote.
Elicker’s ad was ok. But honestly he just doesn’t have the experience - not government experience, but MANAGEMENT experience - to run the city.
Fernandez is the only candidate who has a balanced approach focusing on individuals, communities, neighborhoods, businesses and unions. He is the only candidate with a clear vision and plan for the city. And as the Register pointed out, he is the only candidate who would be ready to work on day one.