Photo Courtesy of Forum Files and Act Blue
U.S. Rep. Joe Crowley lost an historic primary challenge Tuesday from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
By Michael V. Cusenza
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez defeated U.S. Rep. Joe Crowley (D-Queens and Bronx) on Tuesday in an historic Democratic primary victory that has shaken up Democratic leadership from the Hill to The World’s Borough.
Ocasio-Cortez, a former Bernie Sanders presidential campaign organizer, cruised to a 57.5-42.5 win that saw her best Crowley, one of the most powerful Dems in Congress and the chief of the Queens Democratic Party, by roughly 4,000 votes. Approximately 28,000 residents of the 14th Congressional District cast a ballot on Tuesday.
“We always knew it was possible,” Ocasio-Cortez, 28, wrote on Facebook on Wednesday morning, “but you all made it happen. This is what we can accomplish when we come together, choose to believe that a different world is possible—and knock on our neighbors door, and VOTE to make it happen. Thank you all so incredibly much. This is the beginning of a movement. It is my hope that in this victory, we also look ahead to usher in a wave of heroic candidates this. We can do it all, and we can do it now. It takes political courage. And last night, we had it. Thank you.”
Crowley, 56, said it “has been the honor of a lifetime to represent” his native Queens and the Bronx.
“I am proud of the race we ran, and more importantly, proud of all of the work we’ve done to advance this community,” the 10-term incumbent added.
A Bronx native and resident, Ocasio-Cortez earned degrees in economics and international relations at Boston University. Her first taste of politics came when she worked for the late U.S. Sen. Ted Kennedy, handling foreign affairs and immigration casework for constituent families.
Ocasio-Cortez identifies as a socialist Democrat. She took aim early and often at her more moderate opponent, encouraging her supporters to follow her lead in trampling the establishment.
“This is the just the beginning,” she said on Wednesday. “There’s so much more to come.”