Sean Patrick Maloney, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair, admitted defeat in Tuesday’s reelection bid.
Multiple reports claim that Maloney, a five term incumbent, conceded Wednesday morning to Mike Lawler, Republican candidate. He had been trailing Lawler by 6% in the polls, according to multiple reports. He was running in New York’s 17th Congressional District. This district covers Rockland County as well as parts of Westchester County. It is also the congressional district of Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton.
The House Democratic Caucus is in serious trouble because Maloney was the DCCC Chair and has been responsible for winning House elections for Democrats.
Maloney was expected to win easily re-election to his New York seat in spite of the prospects of House Democrats. His district has a Cook Partisan Voting Index Score score of D+8 in 2021.
However, the certainty of Maloney’s victory was in doubt after Cook rated it as a Toss-Up, despite having a Cook PVI score D+3 in 2022, and voting for President Joe Biden by a margin 10% in 2020.
Lawler’s gains were made after New York’s congressional map was substantially changed by Harkenrider v. Hochul, a New York Court of Appeals ruling that dismantled the Democratic state legislature-drawn maps for engaging in “partisan gerrymandering.”
Rockland and Westchester Counties saw Maloney replace Mondaire Jones (Democratic Rep.), who currently represents the 17th District. Maloney will be running in the seat with new boundaries despite Jones being elected to represent more of the counties. Jones ran for the 10th Congressional District Primary, far from his home district. He lost.
Maloney and Lawler fought a race that focused on inflation and abortion. These themes were adopted by both Republicans and Democrats nationwide. Maloney argued that abortion would harm women’s rights and Lawler argued that Lawler was pro-life. Lawler said that Maloney’s support of Biden’s agenda had led to higher inflation, as well as a greater risk of crime.
The Democratic allies of Maloney spent heavily to keep his seat, despite the gap in their polling. Republican groups like the Kevin McCarthy-affiliated Congressional Leadership Fund invested millions in attack ads against Maloney.
Maloney’s defeat comes at a time when Democrats were facing very close elections in New York. The incumbent governor won the governor’s race. In a state that is considered among the most Democratic in America, Kathy Hochul defeated Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin.
Lawler’s spokesperson did not respond immediately to a request for comment.