Democrats Carolyn Maloney, Jerry Nadler Exchange Barbs over Credit for NYC’s 2nd Avenue Subway

Representative Jerry Nadler, a Democrat from New York and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, right, talks to Representative Carolyn Maloney, a Democrat from New York, after a moment of silence outside the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019. U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and …
Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

New York Democrat Reps. Carolyn Maloney and Jerry Nadler recently exchanged barbs over who the credit belongs to for obtaining funds for New York City’s 2nd Avenue Subway, which runs through Maloney’s district.

The two long-time lawmakers, colleagues, and House committee chairs are running against each other in the August 23 primary for the first time, as a court-ordered redistricting map merged the East and West sides of Manhattan into one 12th Congressional District.

The latest feud between the two is over who should take the credit for providing the first part of the 2nd Avenue subway line that first opened in 2017 and runs through the Upper East Side, which is in Maloney’s current congressional district.

The New York Post noted that Maloney has the biggest claim for advocating for the $4.4 billion subway line that stretches from 63rd Street to 96th Street, with stops at 72nd, 86th, and 96th streets. In addition, there is a planned extension adding stops at 106th Street, 116th Street, and 125th Street, which costs $6.9 billion.

During a recent forum on the Upper East Side, Nalder explained that he’s been a long-serving member of the House Transportation Committee and helped deliver the funding for the subway line. “What you may not know about is my role in the 2nd Avenue subway,” he said.

“Back in 2005 when Carolyn came to me as a member of the Transportation Committee as I was and asked me to get funds for the 2nd Avenue subway, I did it. In 2005 and again in 2010 and again in 2015 and again in 2020,” he said.

However, Maloney attacked Nadler for his claims, stating that he had “nothing” to do with the project.

“Nadler’s claiming credit for that? He did nothing. Nothing…Here’s a man claiming credit for a woman’s work,” she told the Post.

Bod Liff, the campaign spokesman for Maloney, issued a lengthy response looking to dispute Nadler’s claims:

Jerry Nadler had no significant role in the planning or funding of the Second Avenue subway, which Carolyn shepherded to completion after 100 years of talking and no action. He was not at the ground breaking, he was not at the ribbon cutting, and when he was asked to sign onto a letter supporting the project, he declined because he wanted funding for his rail freight tunnel, which has yet to be built.

He is not the first man to try and take credit for the work of women in leadership, but there is a reason Maloney has been ranked in the top three most effective members of Congress, while he is ranked significantly lower. Once again, he knows better than that. The word chutzpah comes to mind.

When Maloney met with the same group during a different discussion, she also said, “I fought for the 2nd Avenue subway … I’m proud of having built the 2nd Avenue subway.”

However, Julian Gerson, Nadler’s co-campaign chairman, also issued a response looking to dispute Maloney’s claims, saying that the congressman was, in fact, an integral part:

Any suggestion that Jerry Nadler didn’t play a leading role in delivering the 2nd Avenue Subway is as silly as it is demonstrably false. It doesn’t take more than a cursory Google search to reveal that as a senior Member on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, Jerry secured millions in funding for the 2nd Avenue Subway.

Jerry spent decades fighting for the 2nd Avenue Subway and standing up for 9/11 first responders and survivors–telling New Yorkers otherwise is both baffling and fundamentally untrue.

Interestingly enough, the executive director of Reinvent Albany, John Kaehny, who previously worked for Transportation Alternatives, stated that Maloney was closely associated with it because the line runs in her district; however other New Yorkers also advocated for it, such as Nalder.

“They probably all helped with it. It’s a huge project. It takes a village,” Kaehny said. “Maloney and Nadler probably worked together on it before they became enemies. They were friends.”

Jacob Bliss is a reporter for Breitbart News. Write to him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @JacobMBliss.

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