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Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

Rep. Joe Crowley, the fourth-highest Democrat in Congress, has served since 1999. That all ended tonight when his 28-year-old challenger, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, beat him in their primary for New York's 14th district.

This is a huge deal. And it's perhaps the biggest upset we've seen since David Brat beat then-House majority leader Eric Cantor in 2014. Crowley's defeat is the clearest example yet that the Democratic Party's progressive wing is only getting stronger under Trump.

Why it matters: This upset will have national implications for Democrats and it will force the party to renew their conversations about future party leadership. Just like we saw the strength of the Tea Party in 2014 with Cantor, progressives are starting to win their fight to reshape the Democratic Party in 2018.

The background:

  • If Nancy Pelosi decided to step down from her leadership post, Crowley was one of the leading favorites to become Speaker if Democrats took back the House.
  • He hasn't faced a primary challenger in 14 years.
  • Money didn't matter. Crowley out-raised Ocasio-Cortez 10-1, per CNN.
  • Crowley represented New York's 14th district, which is a minority-majority district.
  • Ocasio-Cortez is a socialist Latina who previously worked as an organizer for Bernie Sanders. Her campaign ad went viral, in which she played up her working-class background.

The timing: As the nation is having an immigration debate, Ocasio-Cortez made abolishing ICE one of her top campaign demands and she's been protesting at the detention centers.

Shot, from a national Democratic source: "Certainly not what I expected at the start of the day."

Chaser: "It's about making change in Washington," Crowley said ahead of the primary, per CNN.

Go deeper

38 mins ago - Health

Moderna says vaccine appears to protect against new COVID-19 variants

Photo: Justin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images

Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine is effective against new variants of the virus that first appeared in the U.K. and in South Africa, the company announced on Monday.

Yes, but: The vaccine was as effective against the strain from U.K., but saw a six-fold reduction in antibodies against the South Africa variant. Even still, the neutralizing antibodies generated by the vaccine "remain above levels that are expected to be protective," according to the company.

Dave Lawler, author of World
Updated 43 mins ago - World

Xi Jinping warns against "new cold war" in Davos speech

Chinese President Xi Jinping. Photo: Wang Zhao - Pool/Getty Images

Chinese President Xi Jinping warned that a "new cold war" could turn hot, and must be avoided, in a speech on Monday at World Economic Forum’s virtual “Davos Agenda” conference.

Why it matters: Xi didn't refer directly to U.S.-China tensions, but the subtext was clear. These were his first remarks to an international audience since the inauguration of President Biden, whose administration has already concurred with Donald Trump's determination that China is committing "genocide" against Uyghur Muslims, and issued a warning about China's aggression toward Taiwan.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Dominion files $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit against Rudy Giuliani

Photo: Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

Dominion Voting Systems filed a defamation lawsuit against Rudy Giuliani on Monday seeking $1.3 billion in damages for his "demonstrably false” allegations about the company's voting machines.

Why it matters: Giuliani led former President Trump's efforts to overturn the results of the election and spread the baseless conspiracy theory that Dominion's voting machines flipped votes from Trump to Joe Biden.

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