There is little denying that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has been facing a growing challenge from the far-left wing of her party — and it looks like that challenge is about to end the political career of one of the House speaker’s top establishment allies.
Ahead of a June 23 primary election, Rep. Eliot Engel, a New York Democrat who has been in Congress for three decades, is losing by a wide margin in the polls to his progressive challenger, education activist Jamaal Bowman, Breitbart reports.
Taking on the establishment
While Engel, who serves as chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, has the backing of Pelosi and other establishment Dems, Bowman has received endorsements from progressives like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) — who herself knocked out one of Pelosi’s top allies in 2018 — as well as former Democrat presidential hopefuls like Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
And it seems these endorsements are doing some good.
A group known as Data for Progress conducted a survey of 525 likely Democratic voters in New York’s 16th Congressional District between June 11–15, and though the poll had a margin of error of 5.1%, the results were still devastating for Engel and Pelosi.
On the main question of who the respondents would vote for in the upcoming primary, Bowman bested Engel by a score of 41% to 31%, Breitbart reported.
A full 27% of respondents said they weren’t sure who they’d cast a vote for.
Not so fast
But before Engel and Pelosi get too excited about the prospects of winning over those undecided voters in the next few days, a follow-up question made it clear that Engel’s time in Congress — at least as the 16th District’s representative — is all but finished.
Voters who reported being undecided were asked which of the two candidates they leaned toward more; 40% of those chose Bowman, according to Breitbart, while just 18% sided with Engel. Another 42% said they didn’t lean toward either.
Engel dominates with white men
The demographic breakdown of the survey’s results made it even more clear that Engel may as well start packing up his belongings: according to Breitbart, the only groups the congressman had majority support from were male voters (who chose Engel over Bowman 41%–39%) and white voters (52% of whom went for Engel, while 30% went for Bowman).
Bowman, for his part, had strong support among virtually every other group, including female voters, those under 45, those over 45, college graduates, non-college graduates, Black voters, and Hispanic or Latino voters.
In other words, barring some sort of miraculous change of heart, Engel is on the verge of being supplanted by his progressive challenger. It seems the far-left opposition to Pelosi in the House will soon add a new member to its ranks.