In addition to ousting six IDC members in the New York state Senate, the progressive movement also propelled 27-year-old democratic socialist Julia Salazar to victory over corporate Democratic Sen. Martin Dilan, who was not an IDC member but was drowning in cash from the real estate industry.
Salazar—who ran on a platform of combating homelessness in New York and guaranteeing healthcare to all as a right—overcame both a massive fundraising disadvantage and a vile right-wing smear campaign that outed her as a survivor of sexual assault just days before Thursday’s election.
“This is a victory for workers,” Salazar told supporters after her upset win Thursday night. “This is a victory for all of you, who every day have knocked on doors and have had meaningful conversations with our neighbors about these issues.”
In a statement on Thursday, the New York City chapter of Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) celebrated the victories of Salazar and other down-ballot progressives as further evidence that New Yorkers “are ready for bold, visionary leadership and will no longer tolerate candidates who are in the pockets of corporations and billionaires.”
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“This primary was about the movement of socialists, tenants, immigrants, and working New Yorkers who are ready for a change in Albany,” Bianca Cunningham, co-chair of New York City DSA, said in a statement. “We are excited to hit the ground running with new leadership in Albany to make the priorities of working people a reality.”
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