Rhode Island’s Democratic primary election for governor will be the first time a People’s Pledge will be used to control outside anonymous advertising in a state-based political campaign, said Common Cause RI Executive Director John Marion, who first floated the idea and helped bring the three Democrats running for governor together to agree to it. It will also be the first time a Peoples’ Pledge, an agreement to pick up the cost of outside political advertising, will be implemented outside of Massachusetts, he said.
“This represents a watershed moment in Rhode Island politics,” Marion said in a press release, “and we are proud to have facilitated this historic agreement and want to thank the campaigns of the three major Democratic candidates for working together to get this agreement done.”
The agreement signed by Clay Pell, Gina Raimondo and Angel Taveras applies only to the Democratic primary and says a candidate will pay the cost of a third-party negative advertising about an opponent, or third-party positive advertising about themselves. It does not cover direct mail or canvassing, as Raimondo’s team had suggested.
You can rad the full agreement here: Rhode Island People’s Pledge. And learn more on Common Cause RI’s website. Also, check out our full coverage of this issue, going back to September 2013, when contributor Sam Howard suggested it in a post titled “Blood primary or People’s Pledge.”
Marion said he initially invited Republican candidates for governor to sign the pledge too, but he did not hear back from them. He hopes a similar agreement can be made for the general election between both parties.