Hillary Clinton Endorses George Latimer Against Rep. Jamaal Bowman in Key Primary

Hillary Clinton, George Latimer, Jamaal Bowman, New York 16th Congressional District, Democratic primary, US politics, Israel Gaza conflict, Clinton endorsement, progressive vs moderate Democrats, 2024 elections

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has endorsed George Latimer in his Democratic primary challenge against Rep. Jamaal Bowman. This move highlights the growing tension within the Democratic Party, particularly regarding Bowman’s stance on Israel. Learn about the implications of this endorsement and the dynamics of the race in New York’s 16th Congressional District.

Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton Endorses Rep. Jamaal Bowman’s Primary Challenger

In a surprising move, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton endorsed George Latimer’s Democratic primary challenge against U.S. Rep. Jamaal Bowman in New York. This endorsement highlights the growing discontent among establishment Democrats with Bowman’s recent positions, particularly his vocal opposition to Israel’s actions in Gaza.

Background of the Endorsement

Hillary Clinton’s endorsement of Latimer, who currently serves as the executive of Westchester County, marks a rare foray into primary politics for the former Democratic presidential nominee. Clinton emphasized the importance of having “strong, principled Democrats in Congress” in light of former President Donald Trump’s potential re-election bid. She praised Latimer for his commitment to protecting abortion rights and standing up to the National Rifle Association (NRA).

Latimer welcomed Clinton’s endorsement, calling it a “deep honor.” He highlighted the momentum it brings to his grassroots campaign, which has been gaining traction due to its focus on delivering meaningful results for the communities served in New York’s 16th Congressional District.

The District and Polls

New York’s 16th Congressional District is a solidly blue area that includes lower Westchester County, north of New York City, and a portion of the northern Bronx. According to a recent Emerson College/PIX11/The Hill poll, Latimer is leading Bowman by 17 percentage points. This is the first non-campaign-conducted poll of the race and suggests that Clinton’s endorsement could further consolidate moderate support for Latimer.

Bowman’s Controversial Stance

Rep. Jamaal Bowman has faced significant backlash for his strong opposition to Israel’s invasion of Gaza following the Hamas attack on October 7, which he has described as a “genocide.” This stance has made him a target of pro-Israel constituents, outside groups, and moderate local Democrats. Bowman’s position has contrasted sharply with Clinton and Latimer’s support for Israel’s response to the attack.

The conflict has resulted in significant casualties on both sides, with over 1,100 people killed in Israel and more than 37,000 Palestinians, including nearly 16,000 children, killed in Gaza. The invasion has also displaced three-quarters of Gaza’s population and created severe shortages of essential supplies.

Super PAC Involvement

The race in New York’s 16th Congressional District has seen substantial spending from super PACs, particularly those supporting Latimer. The United Democracy Project, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s super PAC, has spent over $13 million on TV advertisements promoting Latimer. This level of spending underscores the high stakes and intense interest in the outcome of this primary battle.

Policy Differences and Legislative Records

Latimer has criticized Bowman not only for his stance on Israel but also for his approach to lawmaking. Specifically, Latimer and the United Democracy Project have pointed to Bowman’s vote against President Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure bill. Bowman, along with five other progressives, voted against the bill to maintain pressure on Democrats to pass a suite of social and climate-focused reforms, parts of which were eventually enacted through the Inflation Reduction Act.

Bowman has defended his vote by explaining that Democratic leaders had authorized his opposition, knowing the bill would pass regardless. Nonetheless, this vote has been used to portray Bowman as out of step with more moderate and pragmatic Democratic values.

Interestingly, Latimer himself has taken positions that diverge from President Biden’s policies. For instance, he has opposed raising new income taxes, a stance that places him to the right of Biden, who has advocated for reversing some of former President Trump’s tax cuts for corporations and wealthy families.

Implications of Clinton’s Endorsement

Hillary Clinton’s endorsement of Latimer signals a significant moment in this primary race. It underscores the broader tension within the Democratic Party between progressive and moderate factions. Clinton’s support for Latimer highlights the establishment’s preference for a candidate they perceive as more aligned with mainstream Democratic values and policies.

For Bowman, this endorsement represents a substantial challenge. He must now navigate not only the opposition from pro-Israel groups and moderate Democrats but also the influential backing of a high-profile figure like Clinton. The outcome of this primary will likely serve as a bellwether for the broader ideological struggles within the Democratic Party.


The endorsement of George Latimer by Hillary Clinton in the primary challenge against Rep. Jamaal Bowman underscores the deepening divide within the Democratic Party. As Bowman faces criticism for his stance on Israel and other progressive positions, Latimer, buoyed by substantial super PAC support and Clinton’s endorsement, positions himself as a moderate alternative. The race in New York’s 16th Congressional District is not just a local contest but a reflection of the broader ideological battles shaping the future of the Democratic Party.

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