— Voice Concerned Makes Difference —
Yuan Media
DC, the CoreLocal Politics - New York

Win the Border, Win the Race

Posted February 28, 2024 at 5:00 PM EST
In New York City, a Congressional District, packed with a notable Asian American community, just flipped from red to blue. How did that happen? Why do many consider the Special Election in New York a bellwether for the 2024 elections? With Super Tuesday just around the corner, why does this issue have the potential to secure the most votes?

We still have some time until election day in November. In fact, some districts are ahead of others and are holding special elections. One of these districts is New York's 3rd Congressional District.

Former Republican Congressman George Santos was ousted due to various scandals and criminal allegations, resulting in an empty seat.

On Valentine’s Day Eve, Democrat candidate Tom Suozzi clinched victory over his Republican opponent Mazi Pilip by 7%, adding sweetness to his party’s triumph by flipping the district from red to blue.

This special election deserves attention because it sets the playbook for all the other districts across the country in the months leading up to November.

Both candidates are moderate within their parties. The race is a dead heat.

The district covers parts of New York City’s suburbs, Long Island and Queens, with high diversities, including sizable Jewish and Asian American populations. Both candidates have made significant efforts to secure votes from each and every race and ethnic group.

Pilip lived in Israel for quite some time and served as an Israeli paratrooper. It’s no surprise that she strongly supports the Jewish community.

On the other hand, even in this incredibly short campaign, Suozzi took time out to fly over to Israel to prove his bona fides to his Jewish constituents.

Nearly one in five in this district is Asian American. Their voting power is hard to ignore.

Suozzi invited New York’s only Asian Congresswoman, Grace Meng, to take him to various Asian communities. He tries Chinese dishes like shrimp dumplings and roast pork buns as he seeks to build connections with the AAPI community.

Despite Pilip’s limited campaign experience and budget, she tries her best to learn how to greet people for the Lunar New Year in Mandarin Chinese and to use WeChat to reach AAPI voters.

Upon reviewing their campaigns, it's evident that the pivotal issue determining the election outcome in this district is immigration.

In theory, immigration should be an Ace for Republicans. Surprisingly, a Democrat seized the same issue and turned the table on them.

You are mistaken if you think only border states like California and Texas are grappling with immigration. Since Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s innovative decision to transport the influx of immigrants to the Democratic strongholds, 33,000 migrants have been bussed to New York.

A migrant shelter has been erected in a bustling area of the district. This not only affects the reputation of the Big Apple but also contributes to increased crime rates.

In fact, Pilip, the Republican candidate, herself is an immigrant.

Pilip has quite a unique personal story: She was born in Ethiopia, and raised in Israel. After marrying her Ukrainian American husband, she relocated to New York City. Pilip emphasizes that she is a legal immigrant and is running for Congress to advocate against undocumented immigrants.

Pilip organized her first major press conference of the campaign outside the migrant shelter in Queens. She aims to highlight the severity of the immigration crisis under Democratic leadership. And that’s why she needs to get elected and follow her Republican party to fix it.

But the really kind of wild thing that happens is: that several minutes later, Suozzi dashes to the same migrant shelter and sets up a press conference right after her

As we saw in the press conference that my opponent just did a few minutes ago, she didn’t give any solutions. She recounted why it’s a problem. We all know it’s a problem. Some of us have been talking about it for decades.

Suozzi tells the audience that despite Pilip's loyalty to her Republican party, she doesn’t have the capacity to present any feasible policy to solve the immigration crisis in New York City.

Me, Suozzi, like Pilip, also witness and acknowledge the problem. But unlike Pilip, I’m an experienced politician. I have practical policies ready to fix the border issues. And I won’t follow the extreme left in my Democrat party to ignore the chaos at the border and to give undocumented immigrants a green light.

Besides, he emphasized that my Democrat colleagues haven’t been inactive to address the border issues. We’ve made significant compromises with the Republicans in the Senate, adding aid for the border wall and increasing deportations. But who ultimately vetoed the 11.8 billion bill? It was Republican! They prioritize politics over policy. Can they still be trusted?

Key to solving problems, complicated problems, is compromise. You’ve got to get both sides to cut a deal. That’s the only way you can solve these problems.

Through the tight race in New York’s 3rd Congressional District, we can see that border issues have become a crucial agenda for the 2024 elections.

The immigration crisis isn't confined to border states; it's a nationwide concern that both Republicans and Democrats must address with viable solutions, not just rhetoric, to combat illegal undocumented immigrants and offer asylum to those in need in order to garner support from all communities.

Recent Stories