Democrat Liuba Grechen Shirley — who gave longtime Long Island Rep. Peter King a run for his money in the 2018 elections — announced on Monday she won’t be running for his soon-to-be vacated congressional seat, citing her pregnancy.
The 38-year-old political newcomer said in a video on Twitter that it would be too difficult to run for congress in 2020, with a 1-year-old, 3-year-old and another baby due in April.
“I cannot run in such an important race unless I am certain I can put 100 percent in,” said Grechen Shirley.
After King, the 14-term Republican leader of New York’s congressional delegation, announced in November that he wouldn’t seek re-election in 2020, Grechen Shirley said she was considering taking another stab at his seat.
Grechen Shirley in 2018 challenged the GOP lawmaker — who represents the 2nd District, which includes Nassau and Suffolk counties — and the incumbent beat her by just six points. But she made him work for that win, raising nearly $924,000, almost four times King’s $238,000.
And she made history in the process, convincing the Federal Election Commission to allow her to use campaign funds to pay for childcare.
“As a mom of a 1-year-old and 3-year-old on the campaign trail, running was also one of the hardest things I’ve done,” Grechen Shirley said Monday.
“Our political system is not set up for moms with young children, which is why I had to fight to become the first mom in history to spend campaign funds on childcare.”
It’s also why Grechen Shirley said she launched Vote Mama, a national organization that aims to support and get progressive moms elected.
Grechen Shirley vowed to keep “fighting for moms on the campaign trail” so that “more moms, and even pregnant moms can run.”
She signed off with a jab at her former opponent, telling King that “as your political career comes to a close, I hope you find the bipartisan bravery you were so often falsely applauded for and I urge you to support the impeachment and removal of the president.”
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