CD10 nominee Dan Goldman launches PAC to assist Democrats in tight races 3 weeks before primary

Dan Goldman
Attorney Dan Goldman stands with members of his family and supporters during an address on the evening of the Democratic primary election Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Goldman is running in the packed Democratic primary race for New York’s 10th Congressional District.
(AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)

Three weeks ahead of the Nov. 8 general election, 10th Congressional District Democratic Nominee Dan Goldman is launching a PAC focussed on giving a cash boost to Democrats running in competitive congressional races, primarily in New York, to defend the party’s House majority.

The so-called Democracy Action Now PAC has a goal of raising $100,000 by the end of October, according to campaign spokesperson Simone Kanter. However, Goldman – a wealthy heir to the Levi Strauss & Co. fortune, who served as lead counsel in ex-President Donald Trump’s first impeachment – won’t be putting any of his own money into the PAC, Kanter added.

As the Democratic nominee in a solidly blue district comprised of Lower Manhattan and parts of northwest Brooklyn, Goldman is assured to win the general election over his Republican challenger Benine Hamdan, giving him the space to focus on fundraising for more competitive races.

The overall goal of the PAC, according to a release from Goldman’s campaign, is to protect the Democrats’ narrow House majority while warding off GOP candidates who’ve aligned themselves with Trump. 

“Our democracy demands that we do everything in our power to protect our Democratic majority in the House, and support the many outstanding Democratic candidates running to protect and serve the people of their districts,” Goldman said in a statement. “Our fundamental rights, the rule of law, and our very democratic foundations are on the line in November. The stakes have never been higher.”

To that end, the money will go to boosting Democratic candidates either vying to retain or flip House seats, Kanter said. They include ex-Rep Max Rose, who’s trying to win back his former Staten Island and southern Brooklyn District 11 seat from GOP incumbent Nicole Malliotakis, and Rep. Pat Ryan in his race against Republican Colin Schmitt for the 18th District – covering the Hudson Valley.

Kanter said the PAC also plans to lend an assist to incumbents outside of New York, who are also locked in competitive contests.

“That’s dependent on how much money we raise and who asks, but that’s like the target,” Kanter said. “Just keeping the House, focused on New York.”

According to Kanter, the hearing held last Thursday by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol, the last of several hearings the panel has held in recent months, was what really pushed Goldman to launch the PAC. Specifically, Kanter said, Goldman was inspired by newly-released footage – shown during the hearing – of Congressional Democratic leadership taking the reigns and making calls to governors, national security officials and the Trump administration to get the national guard to respond to the attack and persuade the president to call off the rioters.

“Obviously, the last Jan. 6 hearing put a lot more impetus on it,” Kanter said. “And pretty shocking video of basically Democratic leadership being the President of the United States on Jan. 6, adds a little bit more oomph to it.”

Chris Coffey – a Democratic strategist and CEO of Tusk Strategies – told PoliticsNY that launching this PAC is a smart move for Goldman politically, especially after a contentious August primary where he narrowly overcame progressive challenger Assembly Member Yuh-Line Niou (D-Manhattan).

“I think it’s smart, he has resources,” Coffey said. “If you’re a white, straight guy in Brooklyn and if you’re looking to stand out and be helpful; and maybe try a little bit to heal some of the fracture that existed because of your primary;  and you want to be seen, statewide, maybe nationally, even be picked up by kind of D.C. Democrats; this is an easy way to do it. Or this is a helpful way to do it.”

Coffey said Goldman raising money for Democrats in heated races is likely to elevate his popularity with state and national Democrats overall. But, Coffey said, it all depends on how much Goldman ultimately raises and spends.

“If all of a sudden you have a wealthy Democrat trying to help you, I think it’s gonna go over pretty well,” Coffey said. “If it’s a meaningful spend over the next three weeks, then folks are gonna remember that for the next two years.”

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