Christopher McGrath, 57, of Hewlett, is the GOP candidate for...

Christopher McGrath, 57, of Hewlett, is the GOP candidate for the seat of the convicted ex-Sen. Dean Skelos. Credit: Rick Kopstein

A national group focused on helping Republicans win control of state legislatures has launched a six-figure ad buy ahead of the April 19 special election for the State Senate seat vacated after former GOP majority leader Dean Skelos’ federal conviction.

The Republican State Leadership Committee ad, titled “Reformer,” criticizes the Democrat candidate, Assemb. Todd Kaminsky, for inviting Sheldon Silver to speak at his 2014 inauguration and then voting for him as speaker while Silver was under federal investigation. Silver was convicted in November on federal corruption charges.

“Kaminsky learned quick how to play the insider game,” the ad says ominously.

Evan Thies, a Kaminsky spokesman, called the ad “slimy” and said Kaminsky worked to oust Silver after his arrest. Thies said Kaminsky’s GOP opponent, Christopher McGrath, “called on a shadowy, dark-money group to do his dirty work and mislead voters.”

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