A super PAC supporting Michelle Wu sprang to life this week, with a television ad that mentions her work for the late Mayor Thomas Menino and Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s endorsement of her mayoral campaign.
The ad touts her as the first woman of color elected president of the 13-member Boston City Council and highlights her plan to deal with climate change and her support for making the MBTA free to riders.
The super PAC, calling itself “Boston Turnout Project” and chaired by former Warren aide Jason Burrell, did not respond to requests for comment on Monday. The super PAC first filed paperwork for its formation in May but had not made any public moves before this week.
The outside spending group, which is going up on cable TV, posted the ad on YouTube on Monday and listed its top donors as Green Advocacy Project, Paul Egerman, Lawrence Fish, Jay Cashman and Kelsey Wirth. Super PACs, which are prohibited from coordinating with the campaigns they support, are required by state campaign finance regulators to list their top five donors in ads.
The Green Advocacy Project, a group focused on clean energy, has board members with ties to Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential run. Egerman, a longtime Democratic donor, served as Sen. Warren’s presidential campaign treasurer. Fish is another longtime Democratic donor, while Cashman is a real estate magnate. Wirth is an environmentalist and former co-founder of the maker of Invisalign.
The ad is available here.
Another super PAC, tied to the Environmental League of Massachusetts, is also spending money to back Wu. The money, a total of $47,000, has gone towards digital advertising.
Wu unveiled her own ad last week, which featured Wu saying, “As mayor we’ll make housing and transportation more affordable for everyone, and we will finally tackle the high cost of living.” The campaign is spending $300,000 on airing the ad on cable, broadcast, Spanish TV and streaming platforms like YouTube and Hulu.
Wu isn’t the only candidate with two super PACs: Acting Mayor Kim Janey has one tied to UNITE HERE Local 26, which also started airing its ad. Another super PAC, with ties a left-leaning coalition known as Right to the City Vote, is expected to focus on canvassing.
City Councillors Andrea Campbell and Annissa Essaibi George also have super PACs backing them, as does former city economic development official John Barros. The pro-George and Barros super PACs haven’t yet gone on the air, while the pro-Campbell super PAC, “Better Boston,” has launched two TV ads that have been in heavy rotation, joining Campbell’s own ads.