Jul 5, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Former Rep. Mondaire Jones launches bid for old seat

Former Rep. Mondaire Jones. Photo: Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Just Majority

Former Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday announced he is running for his old U.S. House seat in the New York City suburbs.

Why it matters: The Republican-held 17th district, which President Biden won by 10 points in 2020, is a critical component of Democrats' strategy to retake the House majority.

Driving the news: Jones released a video to social media on Wednesday emphasizing his ties to the district.

  • "I was lucky to grow up in Rockland County," he said. "People here know me."
  • The video also features testimonials from residents, including a police officer saying the progressive lawmaker "listened, and funded the police."

Between the lines: Jones, who served one term in the House, left the 17th district in 2022 to run for a newly open, solidly blue seat in New York City following a chaotic redistricting process.

  • He lost that primary to Democrat Dan Goldman, while Republican Mike Lawler defeated Sean Patrick Maloney, then the chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in the 17th district.

What we're watching: Both the primary and general elections in the 17th district are expected to be hotly contested.

  • Jones faces Liz Whitmer Gereghty, a former school board member and sister of Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who said she raised $400,000 in the last 10 weeks.
  • Republicans, meanwhile, are angling to maintain the gains they made in New York in 2022.

The other side: "The battle royale is on in New York – setting up a brutal race to the left that will leave Democrats’ eventual nominee bruised and broke," said Savannah Viar, a spokesperson for the National Republican Congressional Committee.

  • "In 2022, after running in South Manhattan and Brooklyn, Jones shut down his official offices early and left thousands of Hudson Valley residents in a lurch, and we look forward to reminding them of that."
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