2024 Democratic Primary Results: Someone Should Really Do Something About All This Money in Politics
New York City Mayor Eric Adams votes in 2024 Democratic primary election in Brooklyn on Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (Michael Appleton / Mayoral Photography Office)

2024 Democratic Primary Results: Someone Should Really Do Something About All This Money in Politics

Plus more stories to read while the political dust settles.

Tuesday's primary concluded the most expensive race for a House of Representatives seat in history, as Westchester County executive George Latimer defeated incumbent Representative Jamaal Bowman by 17 percentage points. AIPAC spent at least $14.5 million on Latimer's behalf—more than $300 per vote—to unseat Bowman, a forceful critic of Israel's siege of Gaza who made some stupid mistakes in the run-up to the primary election.  

In his concession speech, Bowman hinted that he wasn't done with politics, and reiterated the message that caused AIPAC to target him in the first place: "We will never stand for the bombing of babies in Gaza."

"Our opponents—not opponent—may have won this round at this time at this place," Bowman said. "But this will be a battle for humanity and justice for the rest of our lives. And we are going to continue to fight that battle for humanity and justice for the rest of our lives."

Meanwhile, in his speech, Latimer tried to reinforce a message of unity with some false equivalency: "We have to look at the arguments of the far right and the far left and say, 'You cannot destroy this country with your rhetoric and your arguments.'"

So…moderate Democrats RETVRN? Kind of? Not exactly. Here's a roundup of how Tuesday's other big races hashed out.

In Queens, union organizer and Democratic Socialists of America member Claire Valdez handily defeated incumbent Assemblymember Juan Ardila and establishment challenger Johanna Carmona. Fewer than 7,000 people voted in this Democratic primary (population of Assembly District 37: 140,000) but it was a significant win for a DSA insurgent because…

In the Bronx's 82nd Assembly District, the DSA-backed candidate Jonathan Soto lost by a wide margin to incumbent Assemblymember Michael Benedetto.

And in Brooklyn, incumbent Stefani Zinerman fended off DSA's Eon Tyrell Huntley in the Assembly's 56th District, which covers much of Bed-Stuy, though the margin of victory was fairly close: just 479 votes. This race featured accusations of carpetbagging (Huntley technically lived a few hundred feet outside of the district but has lived in the neighborhood longer) and outside manipulation (Huntley had the backing of DSA, Zinerman received gobs of cash from real estate interests).

"I hope today they learned their lesson, that real Democrats are not going to stand up to this level of disrespect," Zinerman told Politico on Tuesday night.

Hell Gate will have more coverage of this race shortly.

In the Hudson Valley's 103rd Assembly District, democratic socialists maintained their place in the state government, as Assemblymember Sarahana Shrestha soundly defeated her challenger Gabi Madden, who was a staffer for the incumbent Shrestha beat two years ago.

On the Upper West Side of Manhattan in the 69th Assembly District, former Hochul aide Micah Lasher defeated public defender Eli Northrup by nearly 20 percentage points. Northrup had the endorsement of the retiring Assemblymember Danny O'Donnell but Lasher had basically every other big Democratic name in his corner, including Comptroller Brad Lander.

Out on Long Island's 1st Congressional District, the former Daily Beast editor-in-chief turned talking head John Avlon trounced Nancy Goroff, a chemistry professor at Stony Brook University who, unlike Avlon, has actually lived in the district a very long time. Genius Democratic leaders like state party chair Jay Jacobs apparently believe that Avlon, who co-founded the "No Labels" party (radical centrism!!!) and launched his bid from his fucking vacation home is better positioned to defeat the Republican challenger there. I guess we'll find out! 

Finally, the Queens Machine can sleep easy knowing that their candidate to helm the borough's surrogate's court, Supreme Court Judge Cassandra Johnson, defeated challenger Wendi Li by nearly 10 percentage points.

Tempted as we are to make sweeping conclusions about the fate of the soul of the Democratic Party after a low-turnout primary in late June, we will only say this: Someone really oughta do something about all this money in politics.

Here's some other stuff to read while the dust settles:

Related Posts

Great! You’ve successfully signed up.

Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.

You've successfully subscribed to Hell Gate.

Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.

Success! Your billing info has been updated.

Your billing was not updated.