Here's what we did together as #JewsForJamaal

Here's what we did together as #JewsForJamaal

June 26, 2024

Despite our tremendous efforts, Democrats allowed Republican money to fuel division in our community and ousted Congressman Jamaal Bowman in NY-16.

It took over $20 million of funding from MAGA Republicans, big corporations, and private prison profiteers to defeat this popular Black incumbent progressive champion. It took this historic amount of outside money — the most spent against any Congressmember in primary history — because of how popular Bowman is. It took Republicans registering themselves as Democrats to influence our primary because of how strong his record is. And it took a machine of racist tropes because of how progressive the people of this district are. 

We know why they did it. Progressive positions and grassroots movements threaten people in power. But there are more of us than there are of them. 

Win or not, we built power and we were bold and persistent. Here’s a snapshot of #JewsforJamaal’s work this primary season:

☎️ We made over 100,000 phone calls to get out the vote for Rep. Bowman.

🚪We completed more than 300 canvassing shifts and knocked thousands of doors.

We formed a diverse coalition of hundreds of Jews in the NY-16 area and around the country under the banner of #JewsforJamaal.

🗞️ We changed the narrative! Our opposition tried to depict Jews as an isolated monolith, one united against progressive leaders like Bowman. But we showed up unapologetically as Jews with many views, who championed the best candidate for all our communities. 

Photos of Bend the Arc leaders taking action as part of the #JewsForJamaal coalition

Democratic leaders must learn from this loss, and begin to finally refuse outside money in our primaries so that the will of the people is heard over that of money. Madeline, one of our chapter leaders said:

“New Yorkers know the history of the Republican funders who ended Roe v. Wade, robbed our families of education, housing, and health, and even supported elected officials who attempted to end democracy by offering Trump the White House he lost. Their ads ran with different names to influence a Democratic primary, and Republicans were encouraged to register as Democrats to vote in it. These tactics may temporarily grow their power in Congress, but if the Democratic Party embraces our people-power over Republican money, it can turn non-voters into voters, voters into organizers, and build the Congress we need to survive.” 

Our work is not done. We will keep fighting for the community and country we dream of — a thriving democracy where Black liberation is realized and all people are able to thrive in safe communities. We are grateful to have been in this work with all of you and to know that even though Rep. Bowman didn’t win this time, that we are stronger than ever as a community.

Thank you to everyone who contributed their time, energy, and passion to this campaign. Though we face a setback, our fight for justice, democracy, and human rights continues. We know that we are better and more powerful when we are organized and together, so please reach out to [email protected] to join our team! 

In the fight,

Bend the Arc: Jewish Action Riverdale