John Brooks first won office to this traditionally Republican seat in 2016 following an indictment of his opponent’s father, a powerful local GOP figure, just days before the election. Parkside knew that the voters had little chance to form impressions of Senator Brooks, and that his opponent’s campaign would be well-funded and aggressive.
Parkside reached back into Senator Brooks’ longtime service as a volunteer fireman to re-introduce him to voters, and show that he was a genuine man with true dedication to his community. At the same time, Parkside drew an effective contrast with his opponent, accurately depicting him as a hack in the same old corrupt political machine – and winning the Reed Award for Most Original TV Ad.
John Brooks won with 55% of the vote, increasing his margin by 5% over 2016 and matching Governor Cuomo’s performance in the district. By highlighting his ties to the fire department and “regular guy” appeal, Parkside was able to help Brooks hold his own with the white working-class voters who dominate this district.