April 24, 2019 By Laura Hanrahan
A JPMorgan Chase project manager and stand-up comedian is set to run against long-sitting Democratic Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney in the 2020 primaries.
Lauren Ashcraft, 30, has filed to run against Maloney, who currently represents New York’s 12th Congressional District, which covers Greenpoint, Long Island City, Astoria, and a portion of Manhattan’s East Side. The race will be Ashcraft’s first foray into politics.
Maloney has served as the district’s Congresswoman since 1993, but last June, faced one of the most competitive primaries she had seen in years, defeating her opponent Suraj Patel by 19 percent—a significant drop from the 80 percent margin Maloney had in 2016. Patel has since said he will consider running again.
Ashcraft, a Pennsylvania transplant and current Manhattan resident, works as a project manager at JPMorgan where she helps the company ensure they are complying with bank regulations. On the side, she performs stand up comedy and is the founder of the Collection Box Comedy show. The free show is held at different locations throughout the city with the goal of collecting donations for a variety of social issues, including the Flint water crisis and Puerto Rico relief efforts.
Ashcraft identifies as a progressive democrat and says she will advocate for issues including Medicare for all, disability access to subways, tighter financial sector regulations, marijuana legalization and mandatory paid parental leave.
“We are the only first world country with no paid parental leave by law,” Ashcraft said during a speech at the 2019 Women’s March. “Which means that women often must choose between their careers and family, or they simply don’t get paid while recovering from childbirth.”
While Maloney shares many similar views, newcomer Ashcraft differentiates herself by pledging to not take any money from corporate political action committees, while Maloney has historically accepted PAC dollars.
Maloney could not be reached for comment by the time of publication.
The general election will be held in November 2020. The primary is to be held in June 2020.