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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stuns nation, embodies NHI with primary victory

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez at Bronx rally for Congressional race
Posted: June 26, 2018 at 11:06 pm   /   by   /   comments (2)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the last of the four National Hispanic Institute candidates for Congress to go into a primary election, won a landslide victory over her better-known, much-better-funded, 10-term incumbent opponent — Rep. Joe Crowley — in New York’s 14th District tonight.

With 98 percent of the vote in, Ocasio-Cortez held a 15,897 to 11,761 lead, maintaining the 57.5 to 42.5 percent margin that led major news outlets to call the election for her less than two hours after polls closed.

Though some major news outlets led by mentioning Crowley’s name rather than hers, the victory was lauded as the most shocking one of the political season, getting notice from some very big names:

Media outlets, sensing in the closing days of the campaign that she might win, rushed profiles of her to coincide with the election, at least one of which mentioned her NHI experience:

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/6/26/17501194/crowley-ocasio-cortez-new-york-primary-midterms-democrats

https://www.cnn.com/2018/06/26/politics/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-joe-crowley-new-york-14-primary/index.html

Crowley conceded with class, endorsing Ocasio-Cortez via Twitter:

Ocasio-Cortez took to social media to contextualized the way she ran — to not take any vote for granted, and to engage voters who had been ignored in cycles past:

Ocasio-Cortez will join two other NHI alumni in general races in the fall: Miguel Levario will run in Texas’s 19th District, and Xochitl Torres Small will run in New Mexico’s 2nd District.

You can learn more about those candidates via NHI magazine: here is a link to Ocasio-Cortez articles, Levario articles, and Torres Small articles.

An interview with Ocasio-Cortez we ran four weeks ago included this telling quote:

Many people live in communities that are very solid on one category or the other. A lot of people live in very solid Republican communities and others live in very solid Democratic communities. The issue with that, whether you’re happy with your party representation or not, is that it’s easy to get stagnant. So when your community is voting for the same party over and over again, it becomes very easy for that party to lose its accountability to the community, even if it’s what the community wants. My community doesn’t happen to want to be represented by a Republican. That doesn’t mean that any Democrat should do. I know there are a lot of communities where Republicans have been doing that to their constituents too. It’s a post-partisan problem. As these communities get drawn to be more partisan, the actual folks in charge have to answer less because they usually don’t have primary challenges and the general election is always a landslide every time. Just by me, going out into the community and knocking on people’s doors, people are blown away because no one has ever knocked on their door before. No one has ever tried to engage them before. Our campaign is pursuing a strategy that no other campaign is willing to pursue.

NHI is proud of the three candidates who could become members of Congress this fall, of George Rodriguez who lost his primary in Texas’s 32nd District, but adopted the philosophy Ocasio-Cortez detailed above, and to all the NHI leaders who had found their paths to leadership.

(photo credit: Corey Torpie)

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