NEW YORK — Mayoral hopeful Anthony Weiner released his first television ad Monday in which he casts himself as the antiestablishment pick for City Hall.
The former Democratic congressman does not directly address the sexting scandal that has overtaken his mayoral bid over the last month, but he references it, arguing that the political establishment has long wanted him out of the race.
“Powerful voices have made it clear from the very beginning they didn’t want me to win,” Weiner tells the camera after a montage of footage showing him campaigning around the city. “But this isn’t about what they want. They’ve gotten their way far too long. If you give me the chance, I will fight for you and your family every single day.”
Weiner’s campaign has not said how much it is spending on the 30-second ad, which comes less than a month before the Sept. 10 Democratic primary. The New York City television market is the most expensive in the country.
But Weiner has plenty of money to spend. According to campaign reports filed Friday night, he ended last week with nearly $6.2 million cash on hand — the second largest amount of cash reported by any of the mayoral hopefuls.
By comparison, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, the race's front-runner, reported just over $8.6 million on hand, while Public Advocate Bill de Blasio reported about $4 million in the bank.
The ad comes on the heels of a new Siena College poll, which found that 62 percent of New York City voters think the national attention being paid to the attempted comebacks of Weiner and former Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who is running for comptroller years after being forced out of office in a sex scandal, is "embarrassing." According to the poll, 75 percent of city voters view Weiner unfavorably.