A woman running as a “Democratic Socialist” for the state senate in New York is in hot water for what accusers say are falsehoods in her biography, multiple reports say.
Julia Salazar is running to oust eight-term Democrat state Sen. Martin Dilan in the upcoming general election, but critics say that Salazar has a number of false claims in her biography, not the least of which is her claim to be a “proud immigrant,” the New York Post reports.
Records show that, while her father is an immigrant, Salazar was born in Florida and is not an immigrant at all. Also, her father, who was born in Colombia, became a naturalized U.S. citizen even before Julia was born. In addition, her mother is also a U.S.-born citizen.
Salazar also claims to have been partially raised in Colombia, but her brother, Alex, says that the family only took trips to the South American nation. They didn’t ever properly live there.
The 27-year-old candidate is also under fire for claiming that she is Jewish. First she said her Jewish heritage was on her father’s side, but later she said it was her mother’s side. Yet her brother has insisted that the family has no Jewish heritage at all. Indeed, Alex Salazar says his candidate sister was baptized a Catholic.
Salazar’s opponent is pouncing on the contradictions in her bio.
“Julia Salazar was a Florida Republican until she parachuted into Bushwick last year to run,” Dilan’s campaign spokesman Bob Liff said. “…Voters don’t judge candidates on whether they are immigrants — or even any of the other misrepresentations and outright lies she has claimed as part of her background — but they do care about the truth.”
Thus far Salazar has avoided addressing the controversy over her biography, saying only that she fondly remembers spending time with her family in Colombia and admitting that she was raised in a conservative family but “came to change my mind as I learned more about the world.”
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.