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Murphy, Boak Both Acted Unfairly, Fair Campaign Committee Rules

The Westchester Fair Campaign Practices Committee ruled on complaints from Sen. Terrence Murphy and his opponent, Ali Boak.
The Westchester Fair Campaign Practices Committee ruled on complaints from Sen. Terrence Murphy and his opponent, Ali Boak. Photo Credit: File

Neither Senator Terrence Murphy (R-Yorktown) nor his Democratic challenger have been running the most fair campaigns.

The Westchester County Fair Campaign Practices Committee met Monday night to hear the complaints of the two candidates against each other and ruled that both candidates had made unfair claims against the other.

The purpose of the committee is to promote a climate in which candidates conduct honest, fair and open campaigns, refraining from dishonest and defamatory attacks and without distorting the facts. The committee's rulings are nonbinding.

The committee ruled it was unfair for Murphy's camp to say a charity Boak founded to fight human trafficking did not serve its intended purpose. The committee said the charges were not supported by facts.

A robocall sent out falsely claiming Boak was in favor of repealing the tax cap was also deemed unfair. Murphy's camp agreed to post a disavowal of the robocalls on their website.

"I am extremely pleased by the findings of the Westchester County Fair Campaign Practices Committee. I believe their decisions serve to prove that there is no place in this election for unfair and dishonest tactics, and that the voters of the 40th District deserve no less from their State Senator," Boak said. "Honesty and integrity have been the foundation from my campaign from day one, and I am committed to making this race about the critical needs of our families and the issues facing this district."

The committee ruled it was unfair that Boak said she is "the only candidate who has a proven track record of standing up to corruption," and that she is "the only candidate who has pledged to limit my outside income." The committee said a candidate should not use the word "only" when when reasonable questions about the truthfulness of the claim can be raised, as is the case in this situation.

Boa's claim that Murphy is "protecting child protectors" and "supports child predators" was also ruled unfair. The committee said Murphy's failure to support a specific piece of legislation was not a justification for her statements.

"The ruling of the Westchester Fair Campaign Committee made it perfectly clear that the Boak campaign not only misled but lied to the voters of the 40th Senate District," Murphy campaign spokesman William Faulkner said. "It's clear that Ali Boak does not posses the integrity to represent the residents of the 40th Senate District."

The 40th Senate District includes Beekman and Pawling in Dutchess County, Carmel, Patterson and Southeast and Brewster in Putnam County, and Peekskill, Cortlandt, Lewisboro, Mount Pleasant, New Castle, North Salem, Pound Ridge, Somers, Yorktown, Mount Kisco, Briarcliff Manor, Buchanan, Croton-on-Hudson, Pleasantville and Sleepy Hollow in Westchester.

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