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FIRST ON 12: Mondaire Jones announces run for Congress in News 12 interview

The Spring Valley native and former attorney represented Rockland and parts of Westchester counties for one term in the 17th Congressional District before it was redrawn in 2022.

Tara Rosenblum and Lee Danuff

Jul 5, 2023, 4:15 PM

Updated 322 days ago

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Former Rep. Mondaire Jones is running for the Democratic nomination in New York's 17th Congressional District next year, he announced to News 12's Senior Reporter Tara Rosenblum.
"It's official. I'm running. And you're the first to hear about it on TV," Jones said as he sat down for his first interview as a candidate.
The Spring Valley native and former attorney represented Rockland and parts of Westchester counties for one term in the 17th Congressional District before it was redrawn in 2022.
The district includes all of Rockland and Putnam counties, most of northern Westchester and parts of Dutchess County.
Jones then decided to join a crowded race in Manhattan to avoid a primary challenge against former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chair Sean Patrick Maloney - but lost.
Jones says he is now focused on unseating Republican Rep. Mike Lawler in the congressional district.
"Mike Lawler will tell you what you want to hear, but when you look at his actual voting record, he does whatever Kevin McCarthy and the extreme MAGA Republicans tell him to do," he says. “No matter how hard Mondaire Jones tries to run away from his previous record in Congress - just like he ran away from his constituents in 2022 - nothing will change the fact that Mondaire Jones is a radical progressive who is endorsed by AOC and ‘the Squad’, supports the defund the police movement and New York’s disastrous cashless bail law, and voted for the reckless spending that saddled us with record high inflation,” said Lawler spokesman Chris Russell.  “Congressman Lawler, on the other hand, will earn re-election by continuing to deliver on his promise to be the bipartisan problem solver who Hudson Valley residents want representing them in Washington.”
First, the outspoken progressive and Harvard Law School graduate who grew up in Section 8 housing in Rockland will have to win another crowded primary.
It includes former Bedford Town Supervisor MaryAnn Carr and Katonah-Lewisboro School Board member Liz Gereghty, the sister of Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
Carr sent News 12 a statement in response to the announcement from Jones, saying in part, "I am in the process of building an organization designed to share my record of legislative success with the voters of New York's 17th Congressional district and I'm excited to share more when the time comes."
A spokesperson for Liz Gereghty released the following statement: "Liz Whitmer Gereghty has lived in the Hudson Valley for 20 years and the reason you'll never see her moving to Brooklyn to chase a congressional seat is because the only place and only people she wants to represent are right here in the Hudson Valley. The most important thing right now is defeating Mike Lawler, and Liz Whitmer Gereghty is the best candidate to do it."

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