Due to a court-ordered redraw of New York’s congressional redistricting map, two very prominent and long-serving House Democrats, Reps. Carolyn Maloney and Jerry Nadler, have now been pitted against each other after their previously neighboring Manhattan districts were combined into one.
That development could spell disaster for Nadler’s political career, as polling has shown that his colleague-turned-rival Maloney is favored to prevail in their August 23 Democratic primary contest, Breitbart reported.
Nadler, it should be noted, currently serves as the chair of the powerful House Judiciary Committee, while Maloney chairs the equally important House Oversight and Reform Committee.
Polls show Maloney in the lead
The latest poll results actually come from internal polling conducted by another primary challenger in the race to represent New York’s newly-drawn 12th Congressional District, an outsider and attorney named Suraj Patel who has twice unsuccessfully primaried Rep. Maloney for her seat.
According to the New York Post, which obtained Patel’s internal polling results, Maloney currently leads Nadler by just two points, 30-28 percent, with Patel in third with 19 percent support among likely Democratic voters in the new district.
However, when those same voters were “read messaging about the contenders that aligns with Patel’s rationale for his candidacy,” Patel actually shot to the lead with 27 percent support, just one point higher than both Maloney and Nadler at 26 percent each.
This recent poll shows a much tighter race for New York’s 12th District nomination than previous polls on that particular race, such as one conducted in late May by The Hill in conjunction with WPIX and Emerson College.
That prior poll showed that Maloney had a 10-point lead over Nadler at that time, 31-21 percent, but also showed that a rather substantial 36 percent of respondents were still undecided on who to support at that moment.
An awkward situation for Democratic donors
Meanwhile, CNBC reported in June that in addition to the court-ordered redraw of redistricting maps that created the incumbent vs. incumbent battle, the situation had also made things particularly awkward for quite a few Democratic donors in New York City by forcing them to pick sides in the primary fight.
Under the old congressional district maps, Maloney and Nadler were friendly neighbors in Manhattan, with Maloney representing the Upper East Side while Nadler represented the Upper West Side, and wealthy Democratic donors were able to donate to both of those members of Congress to aid their re-election bids.
That has now changed and, similar to sorting out shared friends following a divorce, those donors are now feeling the pressure to decide which of the two they’d prefer to see as the new district’s elected representative in Washington D.C.
Despite the awkwardness, however, the money will still flow, and CNBC noted that this battle between Maloney and Nadler could be among the most expensive primary fights in this year’s midterm cycle, as it is estimated that a combined $5 million will be spent by or on behalf of all of the candidates in the race.