NY Dem challenging Bowman shares dozens of donors with Republican who sought Santos’ seat.

By Michelle Bocanegra and Jaclyn Jeffrey-Wilensky, Gothamist

What does a Long Island Republican who ran to replace George Santos have in common with a Westchester Democrat in a solidly blue congressional district? More than 60 donors who, all told, have given both candidates more than $230,000.

And the unifying factor in both races appears to be the candidates’ staunch support for Israel.

Mazi Pilip, who lost a special election to Rep. Tom Suozzi in a battleground district on Long Island after Santos was expelled from Congress, is a former paratrooper for the Israel Defense Forces who made her support for Israel central to her campaign. In his bid to oust Rep. Jamaal Bowman in this month’s Democratic primary, Westchester County Executive George Latimer has also made Israel — and Bowman’s criticism of its war in Gaza — a key focus of his campaign.

Representative Jamaal Bowman and Speaker Nancy Pelosi holding town hall at Mount Saint Vincent College

The shared donors have given $233,600 through March, according to a Gothamist analysis of federal campaign finance data.

Donors who spoke to Gothamist for this story said they felt compelled by Pilip’s origins as an Ethiopian Jewish refugee who served in the IDF before moving to Long Island and becoming a legislator. They also felt obligated to back Latimer against Bowman, who has been accused of antisemitism over his criticisms of Israel’s actions, which he’s equated with genocide.

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