In her first endorsement of the 2020 elections, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez announced Tuesday that she is supporting progressive challenger Marie Newman in Illinois's 3rd congressional district.
Newman is campaigning for a second time against Rep. Dan Lipinski, an eight-term right-wing Democrat who opposes women's constitutional right to abortion care.
"The fact that a deep blue seat is advocating for many parts of the Republican agenda is extremely problematic," the New York Democrat told the New York Times. "Marie Newman is a textbook example of one of the ways that we could be better as a party—to come from a deep blue seat and to be championing all the issues we need to be championing."
The progressive group Justice Democrats applauded the endorsement as a sign of momentum towards a Democratic Party that will "fight for solutions as big as the problems we face and create a party for voters, not corporate donors."
The momentum is growing to make the Democratic Party fight for solutions as big as the problems we face and create a party for voters, not corporate donors. pic.twitter.com/mQ17T1E9K1
— Justice Democrats (@justicedems) September 17, 2019
In addition to her steadfast support for women's reproductive rights, Newman backs the Green New Deal, Medicare for All, and has called for a universal child care plan that would be funded by taxes on Wall Street and the wealthiest Americans.
Newman's campaign lost a number of consultants after the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) barred vendors from working with challengers to Democratic seats, but the former advertising executive has since gained recent endorsements from progressive presidential candidates Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
Newman lost the 2018 primary election to Lipinski by just 2,000 votes, or two percentage points. Ocasio-Cortez noted while campaigning in her own primary for New York's 14th district that her corporate-backed opponent, former Rep. Joe Crowley, had given Lipinski his endorsement.
Newman welcomed Ocasio-Cortez's endorsement, saying she shares "some very similar values" with the congresswoman.
"This campaign is about putting someone in place that is in alignment directly with the district on issues like affordability for the middle class and working families, the Green New Deal," Newman told the Times.