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GOP’s Winslow uses online coupon to promote fund-raiser

But anyone buying a coupon from Goodtwo.com will get into his fund-raiser for $25, if 100 people sign up at the site. But anyone buying a coupon from Goodtwo.com will get into his fund-raiser for $25, if 100 people sign up at the site.
By Michael Levenson
Globe Staff / July 28, 2011

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Not many people go bargain-hunting for political fund-raisers. The chicken dinners just are not that good.

But Daniel B. Winslow is about to change all that. The Republican state representative known for drumming up novel and attention-grabbing proposals now has the go-ahead to use Groupon for a campaign fund-raiser he is hosting in September.

In what appears to be a first-of-its-kind ruling for Massachusetts and perhaps for the nation, the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance said Monday that the popular online discounter may be used for political fund-raisers without violating state campaign laws.

Winslow, who requested the ruling, said he now plans to use Boston-based Goodtwo.com, instead of Chicago-based Groupon, for his young professionals mixer Sept. 20 at Battery Park Bar & Lounge in the Financial District. Goodtwo.com, which launched in December, is competing with Groupon and is geared toward helping nonprofits raise money.

Tickets for the fund-raiser will sell for $100 at the door, Winslow said. But anyone buying a coupon from Goodtwo.com will get into the big event for $25 if 100 people sign up for the deal at Goodtwo.

Winslow, who is promising live music, an open bar, and “a few celebrity guests’’ at the fund-raiser, hopes that the online bargains will draw twenty-somethings and young professionals to his event.

“You have to be innovative to be a Republican in Massachusetts, just to keep up,’’ said Winslow, a former judge and former chief counsel to Governor Mitt Romney. Winslow currently serves as a lawyer for Senator Scott Brown’s campaign committee.

“It’s important to use social media to connect people,’’ he said, “and we’ve only scratched the surface.’’

Michael Levenson can be reached at mlevenson@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @mlevenson.