A far-left group, called the Justice Democrats, have divided the House Democratic Caucus by seeking to pick off another establishment Democrat Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) in the midterms, a threatening move to Rep. Jimmy Gomez (D-CA) and Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-TX).
Justice Democrats challenging establishment incumbent Democrats in safe districts to seat members of the “power-hungry, socialist mob” is not a caucus uniting decision. But the far-left group is known for handily picking off establishment members, including two New Yorkers in the last two elections.
Currently, the Justice Democrats are coming full force towards New Yorker Maloney by firmly backing Rana Abdelhamid, a 27-year-old who is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America.
Abdelhamid has been tagged by New York Democrat Party Chairman Jay Jacobs as someone who doesn’t live in the District. Jacobs added, “‘Make no mistake about it,’ the socialist democratic’s challenge is not about causes, but it is about the ‘power,’ and Maloney has the power, he claimed,” Breitbart News reported.
Maloney, who is a 28-year veteran on Capitol Hill and now chairing the powerful Oversight and Reform committee, has started to see fellow Democrats choose sides in supporting her publicly or staying quiet as she goes through the midterm battle.
For instance, fellow New Yorker Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), who chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee, is siding with Maloney. “If you look at her voting record, if you look at how she’s been very attentive to her constituents if you look at the resources she’s brought into the district — it’s been spotless,” Meeks told the Hill. The socialists “going against her does not make sense to me at all. It raises questions as to what the real agenda is here,” he said.
“The overall goal and purpose should be to make sure that we maintain our majority and grow it,” Meeks continued. “This takes away from that. This hurts that. It hurts a process of trying to make sure there’s strong progressive legislation that’s being passed.”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), who is on the Oversight Committee and once backed by the Justice Democrats, when asked about Abdelhamid, said, “I wasn’t aware of this. I had no idea that this was going to happen. … They don’t give us a heads up on their candidates.” Ocasio-Cortez added, “She’s my chairwoman on Oversight. I’m thankful for the work we’ve been able to do together.”
Ocasio-Cortez is carefully staying quiet regarding Maloney. Ocasio-Cortez would not tell the Hill whether or not she would be getting involved in this primary challenge against Maloney.
The Congresswoman, however, has gotten involved in primaries in the past. The Hill reported last year her endorsement of Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) is what helped boost his successful challenge against long-time incumbent and established Democrat former Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY) last year. Bowman was a former public school principal before challenging Engel.
Bowman, when asked about the Justice Democrats and their decision to challenge Maloney, said, “I love the organization but in terms of how they make decisions about who runs against who and where, and all of that, I’m not part of any of that … We don’t huddle as JDs once a week.”
Bowman later told the Hill, “Just generally speaking, taking Carolyn Maloney out of it, we’re living in a different world, a different time.”
Justice Democrats are not afraid of confrontation. The far-left group had an early win this campaign cycle when Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney’s (D-NY) ascended to be chair of the Democrats campaign arm, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC). In his new position, he reversed a controversial consulting ban policy that put a ban on consultants, which helped opponents to challenge incumbents in primaries. The ban was originally put in place less than two years ago, during the last campaign cycle, in the hopes of helping block some far-left primary challengers. Maloney promised to reverse the policy while he campaigned for the chairmanship, a promise which he kept.
The Hill reported Maloney seemed unfazed by the news another establishment Democrat was being challenged by a Justice Democrat-backed challenger. “Birds are gonna fly and fish are gonna swim,” he said. When asked if he was worried about the race, he said, “Do I look worried?”
Previously, reported by Breitbart News, the two House Democrats, Gomez, and Escobar, who are considered to be in “safe seats,” pleaded for help from the donors on a Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC)-sponsored call. According to a report by the Huffington Post, the pair asked donors from the Democrat’s campaign arm to help fend off challengers from the far left during a party-sponsored Zoom call.
Gomez and Escobar were on the call with donors originally meant to help members on the “Frontline Program,” of which the two are not a part of. The program from the DCCC is meant to help signal to fellow members and donors the Democrats who need help the most to retain their seats in the upcoming election.
When on the call, Escobar allegedly “kept her comments general, simply requesting the donors’ support.”
Gomez, on the other hand, allegedly offered a vast insight into being challenged. He allegedly told the donors he’s “in a very tough race” for the midterm elections when he spoke. He went into detail about his situation and “speculated that he elicited the ire of the activist left for continuing to accept donations from corporate political action committees.” Gomez described the tough race he had in the 2020 general. He depicted what happens during the race when he came within six points of his challenger, who was backed by another far-left group called “Our Revolution.”
The Post reached out to the DCCC for comment at the time regarding this alleged call, and their spokesperson Chris Taylor allegedly did not deny any part of their original reporting when he was asked. Taylor did tell them, “We are going to ensure Democratic incumbents have the resources they need to return to Congress to continue delivering for the American people.”
This all comes on Maloney as he sees a serious challenger coming from the Republicans and will have to fend off a battle for his seat.
Additionally, Maloney has been receiving multiple questions regarding his short tenure as chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), on whether he is capable of protecting the Democrats’ slim majority in the US House of Representatives or losing the majority when it comes down to the midterm elections.
Recently it was reported, a “plugged-in” House Democrat staffer told the New York Post Democrat members are concerned Maloney is not doing an adequate job as chairman of the party’s reelection efforts. An anonymous House Democrat aide said, “People would like for him to focus on how to protect vulnerable and moderate members and how do we do incumbency protection when [progressives] are coming after us for seats.”
Moreover, Maloney could also be facing a possible ethics probe in the House of Representatives after an independent ethics watchdog asked Congress’s independent ethics office to start one. Breitbart News outlined the initial report on Maloney which referenced a Federal law mandating that Congressional members must publicly disclose stock trades in a ‘periodic transaction report’ within a window of 30 to 45 days of making a trade, which Maloney failed to do.
Furthermore, the campaign committee, which Maloney heads, also recently allowed campaign cash to be wired directly from the socialist Ocasio-Cortez to vulnerable Democrats. This move came by accident as the DCCC, without telling frontline members, handed out their bank account information to the socialist star from New York so she could wire cash directly into their accounts. The mishap created a wide opening for Republicans to bash the vulnerable Democrats over the transferred money. Some even returned the money to Ocasio-Cortez rather than keep it for their reelection bids.
The NRCC launched a “socialist give back” website Monday in response to these Democrats “being bankrolled by radical socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who wants to defund the police, implement government-run health care, and open our borders.”