Truth In The Maloney Race
Congressmember Carolyn Maloney’s challenger in the Democratic primary, Reshma Saujani, is engaging in a negative and dishonest campaign in an effort to hide the truth about her own record. Rather than focusing on her vision for Western Queens, Saujani is relying on distortions in her effort to unseat Maloney.
The desperate nature of Saujani’s attacks on Maloney probably reflects the candidate’s lack of traction in trying to make inroads into the strong support for Maloney, who has represented Astoria and Long Island City in Congress since 1993.
While Saujani was working for several hedge funds, Maloney was securing funding for East Side Access, creating thousands of jobs in Queens. While Maloney helped direct millions in federal funding to Queens educational institutions, including the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts and LaGuardia Community College, Saujani was working on Wall Street.
Top executives on Wall Street have showered Saujani’s campaign with cash, eager to punish Maloney for her strong stances on behalf of consumers, her success in writing and passing laws such as her Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights (which USA Today says is saving consumers billions of dollars a year) and her leadership on the recent financial reform legislation. In fact, nearly 60 percent of Saujani’s campaign contributions come from people with ties to the financial services industry.
Saujani’s campaign mailers are filled with untruths and negative attacks. A recent Saujani mailer purporting to be “breaking news” cites a Washington Post article that states, “8 House members investigated over fundraisers held near financial reform vote.” The problem? Maloney is NOT one of the eight Congressmembers in question.
In a similar vein, Saujani attacks Maloney as someone who “sides with special interests, failing New Yorkers”. But it is Saujani who insists that she is “running on my Wall Street record, not from it”, as she told the New York Times. As Politico later noted, “The prevailing wisdom is that Saujani is trying to muddy the waters by hitting Maloney on an issue –ties to Wall Street, aka special interests– on which she herself has vulnerability.”
But voters in Queens shouldn’t be distracted by muddy waters, or fooled by Saujani’s mudslinging. Carolyn Maloney has stood up for ordinary New Yorkers time and time again, using her clout as Chair of the Joint Economic Committee and as a senior House member to protect and defend New Yorkers from all walks of life, not just powerful monied interests on Wall Street. Saujani is practicing the worst kind of politics–running a shameful and increasingly desperate campaign that is relying heavily on distortions, and voters should not fall for it.
While we are not ready to endorse, we urge voters to be aware of the negative campaign being perpetrated by Saujani.