Democrats see major upset as socialist beats top-ranking US congressman
Joe Crowley, 10 -term Democrat expected to be partys next House leader, loses to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, 28, in New York
Joe Crowley, a 10 -term Democrat pegged as his partys next president in Congress, lost his party’s New York congressional primary to a 28 -year-old socialist, in a outcome likely to send shockwaves through the party.
With 98% reporting, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez had 57.5% and Crowley had 42.5%, in a majority minority region that included parts of Queens and the Bronx.
Ocasio-Cortez, a Puerto-Rican American and former Bernie Sanders volunteer, defeated Crowley in his re-election bid Tuesday night, after reaching the incumbent on his ties to Wall street and accusing him of being out of contact with his increasingly diverse district.
Crowley, head of the Queens county Democratic party and the fourth-ranking Democrat in the House of Representative, is believed to be Nancy Pelosis likely successor as House speaker if she stepped down.
The result was in comparison with the surprise defeat of Eric Cantor, the No 2 House Republican, to a Tea Party candidate, David Brat, in 2014. Cantor’s defeat stopped any momentum for Republicans in Congress on migration improvement and helped to create the House Freedom Caucus and drive out the former speaker John Boehner.
Ocasio-Cortez led a grassroots campaign and made a surprise visit to the Mexican border on the eve of the election to emphasize her call to abolish the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency( ICE ). Crowley was unwilling to go that far, although he did call the agency fascist.
Crowley had expressed confidence about the race in private conversations and as one national Democratic strategist told the Guardian: The Crowley team did not create red flag or ask allies for help with his primary. Prior to 2018, Crowley had not even faced a primary since 2004, years before his 2018 adversary was even eligible to vote. He had raised over$ 3m for his campaign,1 0 hours the amount his opponent had.
In a statement, Crowley commended Ocasio-Cortez and presented her his backing, adding: The Trump administration is a threat to everything we stand for here in Queens and the Bronx, and if we don’t win back the House this November, we will lose the commonwealth we love.
Donald Trump weighed in as well, apparently viewing Crowleys defeat to a leftwing candidate as a referendum on him. The chairperson wrote on Twitter shortly after the race was called: Wow! Big Trump Hater Congressman Joe Crowley, who many expected was going to take Nancy Pelosis place, merely LOST his primary election. In other terms, he’s out! That is a big one that nobody understood happening. Perhaps he “shouldve been” nicer, and more respectful, to his President!
Crowley had been considered the only plausible rival for Pelosi as Democratic leader, although he had pledged not to pass against her. Well liked within the Democratic caucus, he had recently made a practice of alerting members to his television looks as an understated method of self-promotion.
Elsewhere on Tuesday night, there used to be several other progressive victories. In Maryland, Ben Jealous, the former president of the NAACP, won the Democratic primary for governor against Prince Georges county executive, Rushern Baker. Jealous moved as an ardent liberal and touted national advocates such as Bernie Sanders as he called for free college tuition and marijuana legalization. Baker operated as a mainstream Democrat with a host of local establishment endorsements.
Jealous will face the incumbent Republican Larry Hogan in November.