Today, eight liberal groups with substantial membership in Westchester County and the Hudson Valley sent a letter organized by Food & Water Action to Westchester County Executive George Latimer, urging him to focus on building Democratic power in Westchester over spending valuable resources on a reported possible primary against incumbent Democratic representative Jamaal Bowman in the 16th Congressional District.
The letter was signed by groups including NYCD16 Indivisible, Concerned Families of Westchester, For the Many, New York Communities for Change and Food & Water Action.
One section of the letter reads, “We respect the work you [George Latimer] have done, but we believe that a primary challenge in New York’s 16th district would divide and hurt Democrats and organizers who must dedicate limited resources to flipping red seats in this state. Democrats must be united in the face of the election of a far-right, MAGA Speaker of the House. Your candidacy would serve to undermine a progressive champion who has time and again fought for working New Yorkers, prioritized the needs of his district, and handily won the last two primaries for federal office.” Read the full letter here.
“In these troubled times, when we face a very real threat to our democracy from Republicans and the right, it’s imperative to focus like a laser on winning back the New York congressional seats disgracefully lost in last year’s election,” said Iris Hiskey Arno of NYCD16 Indivisible Steering Committee. “At a time when unity is everything, a primary between two popular Democrats, incumbent Congressman Jamaal Bowman and Westchester County Executive George Latimer can only serve to tear Democratic and activist groups apart – negatively affecting our attention to critical issues including electoral work, the climate crisis, criminal justice, healthcare, and immigration.”
“We should be using our time fighting to get back all the seats that we lost on Long Island and upstate rather than fighting to hold onto a highly regarded congressional representative,” said Cari Gardner, Vice Chair of New York Progressive Action Network.
“Concerned Families of Westchester, a 22-year-old peace & justice organization, urges George Latimer not to run against Rep. Jamaal Bowman in the Democratic primary,” said Frank Brodhead of Concerned Families of Westchester. “We know that Latimer is an asset to our communities, and we have welcomed him as a speaker at our rallies. But we strongly support Rep. Bowman for reelection, because of the legislation he has supported in Congress and because he is a strong opponent of US wars. In the face of the dangers of Trump and the reactionary Republicans, this is not the time for a divisive primary challenge against the excellent legislator we have in Rep. Bowman.”