Bowman Becomes First Member Of The ‘Squad’ To Lose 2024 Primary

( – Representative Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) was elected to Congress in November 2020 to represent New York’s 16th Congressional District. He made headlines in the House when he pulled a fire alarm during a tenuous legislative debate, causing his Republican colleagues to censure him. He was running for re-election to retain his seat, and the results of his primary recently came in.

On June 25, the majority of Bowman’s constituents voted for his Democratic opponent, George Latimer, who won with 54.5% of the vote to the lawmaker’s 45.5%. Latimer is a former New York State Senator who represented the state’s 37th District from 2013 to 2018. He left his position in January 2018 to work as an executive in Westchester County. Spectrum News NY1 concluded that it was ultimately Bowman’s stance on Israel and Gaza that lost him the primary.

The New York lawmaker has been very outspoken about his criticism of Israel’s handling of its current war with Hamas taking place in the Gaza Strip. Bowman has accused the US ally of committing genocide against the Palestinian people who are not involved in the war but are innocent civilians. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which is pro-Israel, donated $1.5 million to Latimer’s campaign to help oust Bowman. It seemed to work.

Westchester’s main business council head, Marsha Gordon, also said Bowman was just not “engaged” in the community he was elected to represent. Greenburgh town supervisor Paul Feiner agreed, stating he’s only seen the congressman about three or four times since he took his seat, as opposed to Latimer, who he saw “maybe five times a week.” That lack of engagement may have played a part in Bowman’s loss.

Bowman is the first member of the squad, progressive members of the House, to lose a primary election during this cycle. There are about eight others in the group, including Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), and Summer Lee (D-PA) — all victorious in their respective primary races.

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