- Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has secured a second term representing her deep blue seat in the House after winning her Democratic primary by a significant margin on Tuesday.
- The final numbers for Tuesday’s primaries will not be known for at least several days, due to the large number of absentee ballots this year. But, until now, Ocasio-Cortez has won almost 73% of the votes, according to Decision headquarters.
- While Ocasio-Cortez’s re-election was expected, he faced an expensive and contentious primary career.
- The 30-year-old incumbent faced her toughest challenge from former CNBC correspondent Michelle Caruso-Cabrera, a former Republican who accused Ocasio-Cortez of being out of contact with her district.
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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the prominent New York progressive, has secured her second term in Congress, beating three Democratic primary opponents in her deep blue district by a significant margin on Tuesday.
The final numbers for Tuesday’s primaries will not be known for at least several days, due to the large number of absentee ballots this year. But, until now, Ocasio-Cortez has won almost 73% of the votes, according to Decision headquarters.
While Ocasio-Cortez’s reelection was expected, the race is a testament to enthusiasm for his leadership in New York’s 14th congressional district, which includes parts of the Bronx and Queens. The district, which is roughly half Latino and 75% black, has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic in recent months.
The result of costly and controversial primary elections followed up with polls in May and June by the Ocasio-Cortez campaign which showed that 79% of potential Democratic primary voters had a favorable opinion of the congresswoman and 72% thought they had done a good job in office.
“Voters in New York want a change, well, the AOC is a change,” Celinda Lake, a veteran Democratic pollster hired by the Ocasio-Cortez campaign to conduct the polls, told Business Insider. “Voters in New York are in no mood to fire her, she has been doing a good job for them.”
Despite strong Ocasio-Cortez polls, he spent a lot on his reelection bid, dropping $ 6 million in his career after raising more than $ 10.5 million as of June 3, the second-highest amount of any House Democrat. .
Ocasio-Cortez’s team argued that the congresswoman spent more than any other House Democrat this cycle both because she faced well-funded opposition and because she refused to take her popularity for granted.
“We run as if we were afraid, and this is how it doesn’t get lost is that nothing is ever taken for granted,” Lauren Hitt, director of communications for the congresswoman, told Business Insider.
The congresswoman tweeted Tuesday night that her strong victory gave her a “mandate” and erased any doubt that her 2018 victory was “an aberration.”
—Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 24, 2020
The 30-year-old congresswoman, who became a household name after her impressive primary victory over former Rep. Joe Crowley in 2018, faced her toughest challenge from former CNBC correspondent Michelle Caruso-Cabrera.
Caruso-Cabrera, a former Republican who wrote a book in 2010 calling for small government and fiscal conservatism, positioned herself as a pro-business centrist and attracted significant campaign donations from Wall Street executives.
While Caruso-Cabrera presented herself as a conservative, job-focused Democrat, she also tried to portray Ocasio-Cortez as ineffective and divisive, accusing the congresswoman of posing as a Bronx native, great at building her public profile and taking refuge in his “luxury” Apartment in DC while recovering from illness during the pandemic.
“She is from Westchester, don’t forget. She did not grow up in the Bronx as she claims,” said Caruso-Cabrera, who raised at least $ 2 million for her core offering, she told Business Insider in an interview in April. “And everyone in the Bronx knows it.”
Ocasio-Cortez, who worked as a waitress to support her financially struggling family, was born in the Bronx and lived there until her family moved to North Yorktown, Westchester County, when she was 5 years old. She returned to the Parkchester neighborhood of the Bronx after college.
Insider first reported in April that Caruso-Cabrera, a New Hampshire native who lived in Manhattan for 20 years before moving to the Ocasio-Cortez district late last year, previously lived at the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Columbus. Circle in Manhattan for several years.
Ocasio-Cortez struck back at his main opponent in a recent attack announcement, accusing Caruso-Cabrera of being a Democrat in name only and unknown to his district. =
Relinquishing some traditional forms of campaigning and scrutiny, Ocasio-Cortez and her opponents focused on coronavirus relief efforts, delivering meals, masks, and other supplies to residents in need. The congresswoman has also made headlines recently for supporting Black Lives Matter protesters and criticizing New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and the NYPD for their handling of the city’s anti-racism protests.