By MIKE LEE
The second round of primary elections in New York on Aug. 23 was an exercise in the union’s strength, as DC 37-endorsed candidates swept to victory in primaries for the U.S. House of Representatives and New York State Senate.
The additional primary was necessary because of a court challenge to the state legislature’s redistricting plan. The New York Court of Appeals ruled on April 27, and a federal court later upheld, that new election maps must be redrawn. The ruling did not impact statewide races for governor, attorney general, comptroller, or State Assembly, which held their primary on June 28.
Like in the first round of voting, the union message was heard loud and clear. All of the union’s 10 congressional endorsements won decisively, while 25 out of 27 state Senate candidates backed by DC 37 won their races.
Notably, the size and strength of the victories cast light on a potential pathway toward success in the upcoming Nov. 8 General Election.
A case in point was the win by Max Rose in the Democratic Party primary for the 11th Congressional District covering Staten Island, Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights and other south Brooklyn neighborhoods. Rose easily defeated Brittany Ramos DeBarros, also backed by the Working Families Party. Rose, who held the seat from 2018 until 2020, will face incumbent Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, who defeated Rose in 2020.
A potential sign that the labor message is getting through to voters: Rose received more votes in his Democratic primary than the total votes cast in the Republican primary.
DC 37’s influence was a factor in other races, particularly the re-election of Rep. Jamaal Bowman in the 16th Congressional District that covers the Bronx and part of Westchester County, and state Senator Robert Jackson, who powered to victory despite a challenge by Angel Vasquez, whose campaign was heavily funded by charter school supporters.
Unfortunately, the court-ordered redistricting plan pitted two important union allies against each other in Manhattan’s 12th Congressional District. Jerrold Nadler, who led the first impeachment of former President Donald J. Trump, defeated Carolyn Maloney, a long-serving Congress member.
Maloney, a strong ally of DC 37 throughout her years in Congress, was tireless in her efforts to help pass the Zadroga Act. The bill established the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program, which offers benefits to first responders and others in the vicinity impacted by the terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2001.
Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. Polls are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Early voting is from Oct. 29-Nov. 6, 2022.