Connolly, Walsh Spar Over A ‘People’s Pledge’

This article is more than 7 years old.

Boston City Councilor John Connolly has called on his opponent in the mayoral race, state Rep. Martin Walsh, to take a pledge to limit outside money in the contest.

Connolly says the "people's pledge" would curb the influence of special interests in the race.

"We can have a campaign about the issues," he said. "We can have a race about my vision and Marty Walsh's vision about the future."

The pledge follows similar agreements between candidates in Massachusetts, beginning with last year's U.S. Senate contest.

"In a two-way race, we know the pledge works because we have seen it work," Connolly added in a statement. "It worked for Elizabeth Warren and Scott Brown. It worked for Ed Markey and Steve Lynch. It can work for me and Marty."

The Walsh campaign has not yet commented on Connolly's request. But speaking on WBUR Wednesday, Walsh said he does not support a pledge to ban outside money. (Update below.)

Labor unions provided a substantial financial boost to Walsh in the preliminary election.

Also in the preliminary, after an education reform group planned to spend more than $500,000 for Connolly, he announced that he did not want money from outside groups.

Earlier in the preliminary, Connolly rejected a 12-candidate pledge as a "gimmick."

Update at 1:30 p.m.: In a statement, Walsh said Connolly has flip-flopped on a pledge and added:

... yesterday, we saw an advertisement from a third-party organization looking to hire Connolly canvassers.

Interestingly, if you read the Pledge, there is a giant loophole allowing paid canvassers. Who has thousands of volunteer canvassers? I do. This is a great second act in John’s ongoing piece of political theater. This is what corporate lawyers do. He was right when he said it was a gimmick. He flip-flopped. I agreed with him when he said it was a gimmick. Let’s talk about the issues – ALL of the issues.

This article was originally published on September 26, 2013.

This program aired on September 26, 2013. The audio for this program is not available.