Nov 09, 2022
U.S. Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney--a powerful Democrat running in a blue New York district--conceded Wednesday to his Republican opponent in what observers are calling a "humiliating" loss after an election night in which Democratic congressional candidates collectively outperformed expectations.
Maloney, who chairs the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), admitted defeat to freshman state Assemblyman Mike Lawler (R-97) in a stinging loss for a candidate who controversially decided to run in New York's 17th Congressional District--currently represented by progressive Rep. Mondaire Jones--after a court-appointed special master redrew district maps earlier this year.
The new 17th District leans Democratic; President Joe Biden won it by 10 points in 2020.
Lawler is the first candidate to defeat a DCCC leader since 1980, according to National Republican Congressional Committee chair Rep. Tom Emmer (R-Minn.).
"There will be lots of second-guessing here, mostly around Maloney's decision to hop districts after New York's new maps came down," NY Metro political correspondent Nicholas Fandos tweeted. "He campaigned for the DCCC job, after all, on idea that he knew how to win tough races in swing districts."
Maloney was rebuked by progressives for running against Jones, with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) asserting in April that he should resign as head of the DCCC--whose purpose is the reelection of House Democrats--if he sought to unseat the incumbent.
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