Fair Campaign Practices Committee Finds Murphy Attack “Unfair”

June 20, 2018: Harckham for Senate Campaign Manager TJ Rogers issued the following statement this morning after the Fair Campaign Practices Committee found that Sen. Terrence Murphy had misrepresented the Committee’s past findings.

“Senator Murphy treats the Fair Campaigns process like a game to score political points and leverage a tactical campaign advantage. Frankly it’s a tedious game, and the voters will quickly lose their patience for it, if they haven’t already. Let’s stop this nonsense, and focus on issues that matter to voters like passing the Child Victims Act or the Red Flag legislation to keep our schools and families safe. These other antics are just a distraction to prevent a real discussion about his record on the issues.”

Per Fair Campaign Practices Committee standards, their finding is reproduced in full below.

COMPLAINT: Candidate for NY State Senate, Peter Harckham, complained that State Senator Terrence Murphy misrepresented the finding of the Westchester County Fair Campaign Practices Committee by posting and distributing a press release alleging the Committee found that Pete Harckham “lied” about Terrence Murphy’s role in the Republican nomination of Donald Trump, when in fact the finding simply stated, “The statement was inaccurate.”

FINDING: UNFAIR. Senator Murphy’s press release is in violation of one of the Committee’s principles “The Committee considers selective quotation or misrepresentation of its findings to be an unfair campaign practice” since the Committee did not say Mr. Harckham “lied”; the Committee said “The statement was inaccurate.” Senator Murphy’s Facebook page continues to include a link to the News 12 story quoting the original press release.

NOTE TO THE PUBLIC & THE MEDIA: A core belief of the Westchester County Fair Campaign Practices Committee is that words matter. Because the Committee’s findings are often used by candidates in their campaigns, the Committee crafts them carefully to minimize the mischaracterization of its determinations. The Committee writes unfair rather than guilty because it is not a court of law and does not want to give the mistaken impression that a complainee has engaged in an illegal practice. It does not rule but rather finds candidates’ complaints to be fair, as in normal political discourse, or unfair if they are false or misleading. The Committee requires individual findings to be quoted in full, so that its conclusions are not used to mislead the voters.

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