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State Sen. Alessandra Biaggi Running for Congress in Redrawn Seat That Includes Eastern Queens

Queens Post
Queens Post
 2022-02-08
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State Sen. Alessandra Biaggi at a press conference in Albany June 2, 2021 (Photo Courtesy of NYS Senate Media Services)

State Sen. Alessandra Biaggi is running for Congress in a newly redrawn district that continues to include a small section of eastern Queens.

Biaggi, who has a high profile in progressive circles, announced her candidacy for New York’s third congressional district Monday.

The district is currently represented by moderate Democrat Tom Suozzi, who is stepping down to run for governor. Presently, the district covers parts of Suffolk County and Nassau County—as well as the northeast Queens neighborhoods of Little Neck, Whitestone, Glen Oaks and Floral Park.

However, state Democrats redrew the district to include a slice of eastern Bronx and Westchester — areas Biaggi represents in the New York Senate. Gov. Kathy Hochul signed off on the new districts on Thursday.

The two-term state senator said she wants to bring a progressive voice to Washington.

“Our country doesn’t just need more Democrats in Washington, we need bolder ones,” she said in a statement. “I am running for Congress in NY-3 to bring progressive and honest leadership to the frontlines of our country’s most important fights.”

Biaggi listed a number of issues she’d fight for in D.C. including combatting climate change, expanding voting rights, enacting universal pre-k, protecting abortion rights, balancing a fair criminal legal system with public safety and delivering affordable healthcare for all.

“Together, we delivered progressive change on these issues in Albany, and it is time to bring our energy and resolve to Washington,” she said.

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The current Congressional District 3 Map (left) vs. the revised map. Neighborhoods in the Bronx and Westchester County are now part of the district (Source: RedistrictingandYou.org)

Congress Member Jamaal Bowman, a left-leaning Democrat who represents parts of the Bronx and southern Westchester, endorsed Biaggi Tuesday.

“I am proud to endorse Senator Biaggi in her run for Congress,” Bowman said in a statement. “As a member of Congress, I am working hard to build a nation that works for everyone, not just the privileged class, and I have full confidence Senator Biaggi, with her tireless advocacy, is looking to do the same.”

Parts of Bowman’s current district, in Westchester, will fall under the newly drawn third district.

The redrawn borders are expected to bring slightly more blue voters into the district, which is likely to benefit Democrats.

For instance, 55 percent of residents who live in the current congressional district voted for President Joe Biden in 2020, compared to 57 percent in the redrawn district, according to an analysis by the Center for Urban Research at CUNY.

Suozzi narrowly won the seat in 2020, which he has represented since 2017. He trailed his Republican challenger, George Santos, by about 4,000 votes on election night, although won after absentee ballots were tallied.

Critics of the redrawn districts have accused state Democrats of gerrymandering the borders in favor of their party. Democrats say the accusations are unfounded.

Other Democrats who have announced that they are running for the seat are Nassau County Legislator Josh Lafazan, Jon Kaiman, former Town of North Hempstead Supervisor, and organizer Melanie D’Arrigo.

Republicans who have filed are Kevin Surdi and Santos.

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