A Mixed Night For NY Women
Back in March, a highly placed Democratic source called to inform me that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi had been motivated to get involved in New York’s redistricting battle due to a concern that a special master’s maps would cost Democrats key congressional seats – especially those held by upstate Democratic women.
As the first women to serve as speaker – a position she had hoped, in vain, as it turns out, to have a shot at regaining as a result of yesterday’s elections – Pelosi urged Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Gov. Andrew Cuomo not to let the lines drawn by US Magistrate Judge Roanne Mann become law. Said my source at the time:
“Every male Democratic member of Congress has a path to run – even in a difficult district – and still win election, but the court’s maps are a real hit to women.”
“They take out (Rep. Kathy) Hochul. She’s out of range, and doesn’t come back. Her district is gone. Louise Slaughter goes down to like a 53 percent district, so she’s a casualty…He’s also hearing from women’s groups that if (he) does nothing and lets map go into effect he’s got a concern from them.”
In the end, Pelosi’s words fell on deaf ears. Cuomo did not intercede to try to get the Assembly Democrats and Senate Republicans to agree on a House redistricting plan and the court-drawn plan became law.
Ironically, the woman Pelosi was supposedly most concerned about – Rep. Louise Slaughter – easily defeated her challenger, GOP Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks last night. Slaughter is now the lone female congresswoman north of Westchester.
Hochul, whose 2011 special election win in a GOP-dominated district was a big coup for the Democrats, wasn’t so lucky. After initially insisting her race with former Republican Erie County Executive Chris Collins was a statistical dead heat, Hochul ended up admitting defeat later in the evening.
Two other female congresswomen lost their seats last night, but since they were Republicans, they were not Pelosi’s concern.
Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle’s re-match against former Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei was called in Maffei’s favor by the AP. But the freshman GOP congresswoman has so far refused to concede in NY-24.
In NY-18, another Republican freshman, Rep. Nan Hayworth, was toppled by Democrat Sean Patrick Maloney. He will be the first openly gay member of New York’s congressional delegation.
All told, the GOP block in the New York delegation is now just six members – a far cry from the three or four-seat pick-up state GOP Chair Ed Cox was predicting at one point.
Nevertheless, it wasn’t a great night for DCCC Chairman Steve Israel, a Long Island congressman, either.
His candidates failed to oust Republicans in two targeted races – NY-19, where Rep. Chris Gibson withstood a challenge from Julian Schreibman; and NY-11, where scandal-scarred Rep. Michael Grimm is still standing after beating Democat Mark Murphy yesterday.
As for women candidates in New York, their biggest win was posted by US Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who, as Nick Reisman wrote earlier today, appears poised to beat Sen Chuck Schumer’s historic 71 percent-of-the-vote record set in 2004.
Gillibrand raised more than $1 million for female candidates running across the nation this election cycle, building a power base in the process. The senator really pushed hard on behalf of Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, who ended up handily defeating her GOP challenger Todd Aikin, who was badly hurt by his ”legitimate rape” comments.
|Print article||This entry was posted by Liz Benjamin on November 7, 2012 at 5:04 pm, and is filed under Congress, Democrats, Kirsten Gillibrand, Uncategorized. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|
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