One of the hardest fought House races in the country feels more like a street fight than a campaign.
It is taking place on Staten Island and in a small slice of southern Brooklyn, where freshman Democrat Max Rose and GOP state congressman Nicole Malliotakis are fighting for control of New York City’s only Congressional borough.
The advertising wars – characterized by hard talk and the occasional f-bomb – are noteworthy for the level of vitriol and nastiness on both sides.
“Bill de Blasio is the worst mayor in New York City history ̵
Hostility towards progressive New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who briefly ran for president, took center stage in the district, home to a large number of first responders, police and law enforcement. who voted largely against de Blasio in 2017.
“Bill de Blasio’s failed leadership was leading New York City to the sewer,” Rose said in an interview with NBC News, blowing up the mayor’s handling of the pandemic before criticizing Republicans for opposing solid relief efforts. pandemics to state and local governments.
Rose, 33, elected in 2018 and only the second Democrat to represent the district in the past 30 years, is a veteran who served in Afghanistan. Malliotakis, the only Republican woman to represent New York City, has served in the state legislature since 2010. While she easily lost her 2017 candidacy to oust de Blasio, she won about 70% of the vote in the 11th Congressional District of New York.
The Cook Political Report rates the House race as one of 25 nationwide problems, but there have been no independent public polls.
Millions of dollars poured into the meeting. Rose raised about $ 6 million until the end of June, according to the Federal Electoral Commission, while Malliotakis raised about $ 3 million until September.
As of Monday, candidates and supporting groups have spent more than $ 9 million on television and radio ads in the district, with about 75 percent of that spending on Rose, according to data from Advertising Analytics.
Many of these ads have a distinct, in-your-face flavor. Malliotakis and groups who claim her Rose brand as “radically liberal” and “a fucking liar” who advocate police defenuity (Rose said she doesn’t).
Rose and the groups supporting the Democratic label Malliotak is a lying “fraud,” even starting a petition to have her nominated global ambassador for flip-flops. In an interview with NBC News, he called the ads “disgusting and dishonest”.
Rose tried to promote his streak of independence, including saying in an announcement that “he was with President Trump when the Democrats attacked him for killing an Iranian terrorist.”
“Because when you kill American soldiers, we kill you,” he said.
The swing district was run by then-President Barack Obama in 2012 and Trump in 2016. Two years later, Rose beat incumbent GOP President Dan Donovan by about 6 points.
“What we are talking about, just like we talked about in 2018, is how we can drain the swamp and put the government back on the workers side,” Rose said. “This time though, the only difference is that we have now produced results as members of Congress.”
Rose said how well Trump performs in the district on November 3 has “zero relationship” with how he will fare against Malliotakis, who he called a “rubber stamp” for Republicans.
“This isn’t a Trump district as much as it isn’t a Rose district,” he said. “What it is, it’s a patriotic district that’s tired of the BS.”
Endorsed by Trump in her 2020 race, Malliotakis said in 2017 that she regretted voting for him, which she believes stemmed from the frustration of being repeatedly questioned about her vote. He said he thinks differently now, adding that “at that time, he still hadn’t sworn most of his cabinet.”
“The president has done a great job on behalf of our veteran community,” he said. “It had created millions of jobs, raised our level of unemployment to record numbers for minorities, for women across the board. And also by renegotiating trade deals for the benefit of our country like USMCA. Of course, I support the president. We are. a ticket, it supports me and I also support it “.
Meanwhile, the mayor’s office has dismissed de Blasio’s characterization of Rose as the worst in New York history, indicating an office holder which supported the Confederation.
“Max Rose is trying to Republican take out a Republican Trump,” Rebecca Katz, a progressive strategist and former aide to de Blasio, told NBC News. “It’s embarrassing to watch, but this is his comedy.”
Republicans called Rose’s anti-de Blasio effort desperate.
Jessica Proud, a New York GOP strategist, said the announcement was the result of Rose “caught between a rock and a hard place on many issues, particularly the criminal justice issue.”
Malliotakis, backed by a dozen law enforcement officers, said voting for Rose is a vote to keep the Democrats in control of the House and that “however much Max tries to distance himself from Mayor de Blasio, it is clear he supports many same policies. “
Neal Kwatra, a Democratic strategist in New York, said Rose “cleverly” played an anti-de Blasio sentiment, building “a very identifiable anti-de Blasio brand as part of who he is, which is a huge asset in a neighborhood like that, frankly. “
Kwatra said Rose is only rivaled by Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Among New York’s emerging young politicians, adding that Rose reminded him a lot of former New York City Mayor Ed Koch.
“It’s very visceral and, frankly, New Yorkers, especially in their politicians, appreciate it,” Kwatra said.
Rose read mentions on her Twitter account this month, including a user named Andrew who said, “Max Rose is garbage though.”
“Fuck you, Andrew,” Rose replied.