Ocasio-Cortez-Backed District Attorney Candidate Concedes

Tiffany Cabán received help from Soros money, Democratic Socialists of America

Tiffany Caban
Tiffany Caban / Getty Images
August 7, 2019

A far-left candidate for district attorney in Queens, New York, who was backed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) has conceded her race.

Tiffany Cabán, a former public defender and democratic socialist, conceded Tuesday night after a lengthy recount following the June 25 primary. Cabán was defeated by Melinda Katz, who was backed by the Democratic establishment, by 55 votes, the New York Times reports.

"We terrified the Democratic establishment," Cabán said. "You don't have to work and build with an entrenched establishment to build a campaign that literally changes the course of history."

As Cabán was up by 1,100 votes on the night of the primary, the candidate declared victory and Rep. Ocasio-Cortez took to Twitter to for a victory lap. "They're the Queens!" wrote New York Daily News as the two celebrated.

However, in early July, outstanding affidavit and absentee ballots were officially tallied, which put Katz ahead by 20 votes and triggered a recount. Progressive activists accused Katz of suppressing voter turnout, with some saying voter fraud was committed in the election, the Times notes.

Cabán received the backing of a number of left-wing groups, including the Democratic Socialists of America. In addition to Ocasio-Cortez's endorsement, her campaign committee spent $1,000 to send 50,000 emails seeking contributions for Cabán, according to its filings.

Liberal billionaire George Soros also hopped into the race, but did so via the Working Families Party, a minor political party, which was focusing its efforts on Cabán's election.

Five days before the primary, the Justice and Public Safety PAC, a federal PAC used by Soros, pushed $70,000 to the Working Families Party. In early July, prior to the complete tally of outstanding affidavit and absentee ballots, Cabán's success was called a "win" for the group.

The Real Justice PAC, a committee founded by Black Lives Matter activist Shaun King and former staffers to Sen. Bernie Sanders's (I., Vt.) 2016 presidential campaign, also interjected themselves into the Queens DA race, New York campaign finance filings show.

Soros and King have both pushed resources into the same district attorney races in the past, including in San Diego, in an effort to "overhaul" the criminal justice system.