Nadler beats Maloney in battle for top House Democrats


NEW YORK – U.S. Representative Jerry Nadler, who has twice led fights to impeach former President Donald Trump, defeated U.S. Representative Carolyn Maloney in a Democratic primary on Tuesday after a court forced the two lawmakers veterans in the same New York congressional district.

Nadler’s victory ends a 30-year run in Congress for Maloney, who fought to secure government assistance for people sickened by clouds of toxic soot after the 9/11 attacks.

The unusual fight between the incumbents who have spent decades working together was the result of a redistricting process that lumped together Nadler’s home base on the west side of Manhattan with Maloney’s on the east side, neither of which wishing to present themselves in another part of the city.

In his victory speech, Nadler said he and Maloney “have spent much of our adult lives working together to better both New York and our nation. I speak for everyone in this room. tonight when I thank her for her decades of service to our city.”

Nadler also beat Suraj Patel, a 38-year-old lawyer and lecturer at New York University who has failed to emerge from a Democratic congressional primary in three consecutive tries.

Nadler, 75, was first elected to Congress in 1992. As chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, he led Trump’s two impeachments. Nadler was buoyed in the final weeks of the campaign by endorsements from The New York Times and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

He promised he would return to Congress “with a mandate to fight for causes that many of us know are just,” including abortion access and climate change.

Maloney, 76, also first elected in 1992, is the first woman to chair the House Oversight and Reform Committee. She is known for her longstanding advocacy with 9/11 first responders seeking compensation for illnesses they attribute to contamination resulting from the destruction of the World Trade Center. She wore a firefighter jacket to Capitol Hill and the 2019 Met Gala.

Incumbent candidate for New York’s 12th congressional district, Rep. Carolyn Maloney, DN.Y., speaks during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington on March 11, 2020.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

Maloney said women in politics still face “misogyny” today, which she herself experienced while campaigning this year.

“I am truly saddened that we no longer have a woman representing Manhattan in Congress,” Maloney added. “It was a great, great honor, a joy and a privilege to work for you.”

Few political differences between Nadler, Maloney and Patel emerged during the primary campaign.

All support abortion rights, the Green New Deal and tighter restrictions on gun ownership. Patel argued that the generation of Nadler and Maloney failed to achieve Democratic goals such as codifying Roe v. Wade and should give in to new blood.

Nadler and Maloney countered that their seniority in Congress brings influence that benefits New Yorkers.

Friends for many years, the two Democrats lamented having to run against each other – something that only happened after a court redrew the boundaries of the congressional districts of the United States. state after concluding that the legislature botched the process.

“I didn’t want to race my good friend, Jerry Nadler,” Maloney said during a recent debate. “We have been friends and allies for years. Unfortunately, we were dragged into the same neighborhood.

Yet during the campaign trail, Maloney said that as a woman she would fight harder to protect abortion rights than Nadler.

Asked during a debate how his record differed from Maloney’s, Nadler cited his votes against the Iraq War and the Patriot Act, and in favor of the Iran nuclear deal. Maloney, also elected to Congress in 1992, voted the other way on all three.

Maloney has also come under fire from opponents for her past positions on vaccines, including in 2006 when she introduced legislation ordering the federal government to study the debunked theory that vaccines can cause autism. Maloney insisted she supported vaccines and regretted ever questioning vaccine safety.

The primary winner from the majority Democratic district will face Republican Michael Zumbluskas in November’s general election.

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