(UPDATED 4:30 p.m.) HARTFORD, CT — His last financial report showed he only had about $46,000 left, but Steve Obsitnik is pushing forward with a six-figure ad buy to get himself on television.
Obsitnik, the Westport entrepreneur and former Navy officer, today remained the only gubernatorial candidate who has yet to receive his $1.35 million clean election grant. The State Elections Enforcement Commission met this afternoon to consider applications and did not take action on Obsitnik’s.
In the meantime, Obsitnik said he would use his own money to pay for the 30-second television ad.
“Despite today’s news the Obsitnik Campaign remains confident. We launched our first TV ad today with a six-figure media buy,” said Obsitnik campaign manager Dan Debicella. “SEEC rules allow Steve to personally pre-pay for expenses and be reimbursed when we get the grant. Our campaign is up on air, knocking on thousands of doors, and gaining momentum. We are confident in the approval of our grant in the very near future. We heard on Saturday that we were $700 short of the grant amounts, and submitted $3,800 in new donations on Monday. This is now just a matter of processing time for the SEEC.”
The ad shows Obsitnik talking to an actor labeled “Hartford career politician.”
Obsitnik said he has a plan to create 300,000 jobs in the next eight years. The actor playing the politician interrupts Obsitnik and says “our jobs record is remarkable.”
Obsitnik counters that Connecticut has only created 6,000 jobs over the past 30 years.
“That’s remarkably bad,” Obsitnik tells the politician.
“Yes, remarkable,” the politician replies.
Obsitnik is the last of the five Republican candidates running for governor to get on television.
Self-funders David Stemerman and Bob Stefanowski have been on television for months now, and Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton and Tim Herbst, who each received $1.35 million in public financing, joined them about two weeks ago.
The State Elections Enforcement Commission is still investigating Obsitnik’s campaign and an independent expenditure group supporting his candidacy. However, in the past the regulators have approved grants for candidates under investigation by the agency.
In 2014, Sen. Ted Kennedy Jr.‘s campaign was under investigation but still received its clean election grant that year and in 2016. The investigation in Kennedy’s case is still open and has yet to be resolved.