Fifteen-term U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler won the Democratic primaries in a hotly contested race for Congress in Manhattan while a major Manhattan/Brooklyn race for an open congressional seat remained too close to call Tuesday night, in the second of two elections following a tumultuous redistricting process.
Claudia Irizarry Aponte, George Joseph, and Stephon Johnson, The City
Republished with Permission: The Roosevelt Island Daily News
Roosevelt Island Election Day Totals
- Maloney: 147
- Nadler: 110
- Patel: 98
Political newcomer Dan Goldman, tailed closely by Manhattan Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou in early returns, declared victory in the 10th Congressional District at a campaign watch party in SoHo despite the race being too close to call.
Absentee ballot counts will prove crucial in that primary.
As of Tuesday evening, nearly 21,502 Democratic voters in the 10th District had requested absentee ballots, with 7,849 ballots returned, according to numbers released by the city Board of Elections. Goldman led runner-up Niou by around 1,000 votes.
“I am proud to stand in front of you here today as your Democratic nominee for Congress,” Goldman told supporters. “And while we appreciate and respect the democratic process and will make sure that all the votes are counted, it is quite clear from the way that the results have come in that we have won.”
Niou told supporters at her own campaign party: “We will not concede until we count every vote.”
In Brooklyn and Staten Island Max Rose, the former single-term congressman, secured the Democratic nomination and in the general election will face incumbent Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, a Republican, in the city’s only swing district.
Nadler and the eventual winner of the Democratic primary in the 10th Congressional District are expected to cruise to victory in the November general election in areas where more than two-thirds of registered voters are Democrats.
Nadler declared victory shortly after 10 p.m. on Tuesday at a watch party on the Upper West Side. “This district does not belong to me, or to my opponents for that matter. It belongs only to the voters of this district — New Yorkers who get up every day and busy themselves with building a better, fairer city. Those New Yorkers get to choose who best represents the people and the values of this city.”
“And you know what? I think the voters made themselves clear tonight.”
Socialist Senator Summer
Voters also elected candidates in state Senate primaries, where incumbents staved off challengers who attracted a host of outside spending. And Kristen González, a Democratic Socialists of America-backed candidate in a district spanning Astoria to Greenpoint, defeated centrist Democrat and former City Council member Elizabeth Crowley.
The late-summer primary attracted low turnout: The city Board of Elections reported that as of 6 p.m. only 237,888 voters, including early voters, turned to the polls, although 2.3 million people had contests to vote for on Tuesday. That puts turnout above 10.3%, excluding absentee ballots.
Only 3.3% of voters with a race in their district cast ballots during the nine-day early voting period ending on Sunday, compared to the also-dismal 5.6% total for that same period in the June primary.
Nadler held onto another term in Congress in the new 12th Congressional District spanning the Upper West and Upper East sides, defeating Rep. Carolyn Maloney and another challenger, Suraj Patel, after a court-appointed expert drew new political maps that put the two incumbent members’ voter bases, and their homes, in the same district.
The newly drawn 10th Congressional District meanwhile was a rare open seat, where more than a dozen Democrats vied to represent Lower Manhattan and much of brownstone Brooklyn.
Dan Goldman, tailed closely by Manhattan Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou in early returns, is an attorney and heir of the Levi Strauss & Co. fortune. He is best known as the lead counsel of the House impeachment inquiries into former president Donald Trump. Goldman, who secured the endorsement of The New York Times and Teamsters Local 202, injected millions of his personal fortune to his campaign in the days and weeks leading up to Primary Day.
The former president gave Goldman a backhanded endorsement on Aug. 17, stating on his social media app Truth Social that it was his “great honor” to endorse Goldman “not because of the fact that he headed up the Impeachment Committee and lost, but because he was honorable, fair, and highly intelligent.”
Absentee ballot counts will prove crucial as the primary in the 10th District remains too close to call.
As of Tuesday evening, nearly 21,502 Democratic voters in the 10th District had requested absentee ballots, with 7,849 returned, according to numbers released by the city Board of Elections. Goldman led runner-up Niou by around 1,000 votes.
A crowded field of hopefuls vied in a rare open primary for a district spanning New York’s toniest neighborhoods and some of its most iconic landmarks, including Wall Street, the Brooklyn Bridge and the World Trade Center. It’s also home to two of New York’s Chinatowns — one in lower Manhattan and in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park — and some of the city’s largest public housing projects.
More than a dozen candidates vied for the seat, also including Mondaire Jones, the current representative in Westchester and Rockland County who chose to run for the seat after being elbowed out of his current district by national Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chair Sean Patrick Maloney; Carlina Rivera, a City Council member representing the Lower East Side; Niou, a lower Manhattan Assembly member; Jo Anne Simon, an Assembly member in brownstone Brooklyn; and former Rep. Elizabeth Holtzman. Former Mayor Bill de Blasio dropped out in July.
Influential progressive political groups split their support: The Working Families Party endorsed Niou early in the race, and labor unions divided among candidates or declined to endorse at all.
In the congressional district spanning Staten Island and parts of southern Brooklyn, Rose clinched the Democratic nomination over Brittany Ramos DaBarros, a left-leaning Afro-Latina and political newcomer who, like Rose, is a combat veteran.
He will face a rematch with incumbent Malliotakis, who defeated him in the 2020 general election after he’d served only a single term. The 11th Congressional District is the city’s only swing district: Donald Trump received 57% of the vote on Staten Island in 2020.
Rose’s victory in November is crucial for Democrats to hold on to an already slim House majority, in the face of a possible Republican “red wave.”
Rose declared victory shortly after polls closed at 9 p.m. Tuesday night. “WE WON!! I am so grateful to have earned the support of the people of the 11th Congressional District once again. If we are going to build a safe and affordable Staten Island and Brooklyn then we need to turn the page on the broken politics that brought us to this moment.”
Up the Hudson from New York City, two other closely watched congressional primaries also got decided Tuesday. Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney defeated state Sen. Alessandra Biaggi in a newly drawn district spanning parts of Westchester and Rockland counties, and Pat Ryan beat Republican Marc Molinaro to succeed Lt. Gov. Antonio Delgado in the special election in the district covering parts of the Hudson Valley and the Catskills.
Titans Head to Head
Nadler’s decision to give up his old 10th District and instead run in the new 12th District, spanning Manhattan’s Upper West and East Sides, sent political shockwaves and left voters torn choosing between two beloved electeds.
The stakes were sky-high in this showdown between two titans of New York Democratic politics, both of whom chair influential congressional committees — Nadler, the judicial committee and Maloney, the oversight committee — with more than 60 years of House experience between them.
Nadler, an eight-term Assembly member before his first House election in 1992, led two impeachments of Donald Trump, though neither won a conviction of the former president. Maloney was a public school teacher before her 1982 election to the City Council, where she was the first woman to have a child while serving on the municipal body. In the House, she introduced the bill that would become the World Trade Center Health Program and September 11th Victim Compensation fund.
Locked in a battle for political survival, the primary lifted the veil on any perceived cordiality between the two Democratic lions.
Speaking to NY1 reporters on Sunday, Maloney quoted a New York Post editorial that described Nadler as “senile.” And according to CNN, Maloney has privately told supporters that Nadler is “half dead,” suggesting that he wouldn’t be able to finish his term if elected.
The day the New York Times reported that Maloney, one of the richest members of Congress, lent her campaign $900,000 from her retirement account, Nadler chided in a tweet linking to the article: “I’m the son of a chicken farmer—no fortune over here!”
Out on the polls on Tuesday, an Upper East Side voter who identified himself only as Stephen said he was over the primary.
“You can’t miss it in the mail every day and on the news every day,” he said. “Ad. Ad. Ad. Ad. Ad.”
And on the Upper West Side, a voter who identified herself only as Sarah said she was sticking with Nadler. “We know what we’re getting. He really understands the Upper West and the difference between the Upper West Side and the Upper East Side. I don’t think Maloney does.”
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