You are reading

Astoria Progressive Bows Out of Congressional Race Due to Redistricting

Rana Abdelhamid Source: RanaForCongress

June 2, 2022 By Christian Murray

Rana Abdelhamid, an Astoria progressive who mounted a campaign for the 12th Congressional District, announced Tuesday that she is no longer running due to redistricting.

Abdelhamid, a young Muslim woman who entered the race more than a year ago with the backing of Justice Democrats, issued a statement Tuesday noting that the new map had cut her out of the district.

“Today, I am formally suspending my campaign for Congress,” she said. “After nearly two years of putting together this effort, this was a very difficult decision to make. But because my community and I were cut out of our district, we were left with no other choice.”

Abdelhamid, who had raised nearly $1 million from more than 11,000 people, was trying to defeat incumbent Carolyn Maloney, who has been in congress for nearly three decades.

The revised maps, which were finalized mid-May, radically changed the shape of the 12th District, cutting out Queens and Brooklyn—and creating a more compact district in Manhattan.

The map was created by an independent court-appointed special master, who was appointed to draft the congressional maps across the state. The special master was appointed after a state Supreme Court judge ruled that Democrats gerrymandered the districts in their favor when they created the maps.

The map drawn by the special master is on the left, the current map is on the right (source: redistrictingandyou)

The revised district map has cut the Queens and Brooklyn portions of the current 12th District into two.

Astoria has become part of the 14th Congressional District, which is currently represented by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, while Long Island City, Greenpoint and Williamsburg have been folded into the 14th Congressional District, currently represented by Nydia Velázquez. Both congressmembers are Hispanic women.

Abdelhamid, an activist who is the daughter of Egyptian immigrants, argues that the new map was “drawn through an undemocratic process” and took a swipe at Carolyn Maloney—the incumbent who now faces a fierce battle with Rep. Jerry Nadler for the seat—for trying to remove the minority communities from the district.

The neighborhoods of western Queens and Brooklyn are being split between NY-7, currently represented by Nydia M. Velázquez, and NY-14, represented by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (Photos: U.S. Congress)

“From the very beginning, Carolyn Maloney fought to remove the Queens and Brooklyn-based communities of color from her district,” Abdelhamid said in a statement. “She got exactly what she wanted: a fully Manhattan district and my community kicked out the door.”

Abdelhamid took issue with the new district based on demographics.

“The new NY-12…no longer includes Queens or Brooklyn. That means that my home and my community which includes, working class, Black and brown, Muslim and Arab immigrant communities of interest in Queens, were all divided into two districts, NY-7 and NY-14, diluting our opportunity for representation and political power.”

She said the new maps are “reminiscent of an ongoing legacy of noninclusive gerrymandering which continues to rob communities of interest like my own of the opportunity for representation.”


“For a community with no representation in New York City politics, for a community that was harassed and profiled by law enforcement for years, a community that continues to be gentrified, whose story is barely told, that glimpse of representation was a dream.”

Abdelhamid, who graduated from Middlebury College and the Harvard Kennedy School—and reportedly works for Google, advocated for a range of progressive policies such as the Green New Deal, Medicare For All, affordable housing and an end to mass incarceration.

Suraj Patel a Manhattan attorney who is running to represent the 12th Congressional District

She said, when she released a video announcing her campaign, that these were issues of significance to her and shared stories about her parents. She also said she became an activist at the age of 16, when a man on the street tried to snatch her hijab off her head.

Her campaign was not without controversy. Prior to the final map being drafted, she tried to kick Suraj Patel, a first generation American, out of the Democratic primary by challenging the signatures he collected that were needed to get on the ballot. She questioned the validity of his signatures, but her claims were rejected by the Board of Elections.

Abdelhamid, an activist and community organizer, will not be leaving the political arena.

“When the opportunity presents itself, we will be more than ready than ever to achieve the electoral representation we deserve, because we have this infrastructure and the power behind us.”

email the author: news@queenspost.com

One Comment

Click for Comments 
Jorge Colon

Rana Abdelhamid collected nearly $1 million.. Nice haul…donde esta el botin?

2
1
Reply

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Urgent manhunt underway for ‘animal’ who allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl in Flushing park on Thursday: NYPD

The NYPD announced a $10,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of a Hispanic man who allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl in a wooded area of Kissena Corridor Park on Thursday afternoon.

More than sixty investigators were at the crime scene late into the night. During a press briefing by NYPD brass on Friday, Chief of Department Jeffrey Maddrey said that the manhunt was expanded city-wide and that the department would spare no expense until the suspect was apprehended.

Southeast Queens man arraigned on weapons charges after cops search his ‘ghost car’ near LaGuardia Airport: DA

A Hollis man was criminally charged after police discovered a cache of weapons in his vehicle during a traffic stop. He was pulled over for driving a “ghost car” with obscured license plates in East Elmhurst near LaGuardia Airport during the early morning hours of June 12.

Judd Sanson, 27, of Jamaica Avenue, was ordered held without bail after he was arraigned in Queens Criminal Court on Thursday afternoon on a criminal complaint charging him with multiple counts of weapons possession, unlawful possession of pistol or revolver ammunition, and unlawful use of a police uniform or emblem and other crimes after the arsenal was found in his SUV.

‘Ghost car’ driver arrested in East Elmhurst after traffic stop reveals weapons, threatening note: NYPD

Police from the 110th Precinct in Elmhurst discovered an arsenal of weapons in a ghost car they pulled over on Ditmars Boulevard and 86th Street in East Elmhurst early Wednesday morning.

NYPD Chief of Department Jeffrey Maddrey held a press briefing at the 110th Precinct on Wednesday afternoon to discuss what the sergeant and three officers from the 110th Precinct public safety team found when they pulled over a black Ford Explorer at around 1:30 a.m. because it had blacked-out license plates.

Henry ‘Hank’ Krumholz, stalwart pioneer of Queens LGBTQ Pride, dies at 73

Henry “Hank” Krumholz, a pioneering gay rights activist in Queens, passed away on Sunday in his Flushing apartment at the age of 73.

Krumholz played a crucial role in the establishment and success of the Queens LGBTQ Pride Parade, which is held annually in Jackson Heights. He joined the parade’s sponsoring organization right after its inaugural event in 1993 and continued his involvement for decades. His passing came just a week after this year’s parade on June 2, marking its 31st anniversary.