Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Sunday drummed up support for Queen’s District Attorney candidate Tiffany Cabán at a rally ahead of this week’s primary.
Hundreds of people flocked to Travers Park in Jackson Heights for the afternoon event in support of the AOC-backed hopeful, some holding signs that read “No new jails” and “Race against the Queens machine.”
“This race is so incredibly important … because it is not just about electing Tiffany Cabán to the district attorney’s office, this is about changing the entire paradigm of criminal justice,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a speech at the rally. “That’s what this race is about.”
The Democratic congresswoman, whose district includes parts of Queens and the Bronx, said Cabán, 31, told her she wants to focus on community safety rather than criminalization during a long phone conversation.
“For so long, what was taken for granted we had a heuristic, a rule of thumb, that jails and locking people up was what community safety meant. And electing Tiffany will change that,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
“For me, I don’t feel more safe when my neighbors are in jail. I believe that what safety is is freedom from fear.”
Ocasio-Cortez said her pick for the position would be a “healer” in the community.
Folks who attended the rally were encouraged to sign up for canvassing shifts, in exchange for free tacos.
Public defender Cabán, a democratic socialist, on Tuesday will be facing off against five other candidates, including Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and former State Supreme Court Judge Greg Lasak.
She’s been blasted for some of her policies, including vowing to decriminalize prostitution, and also to give a free pass to brothel owners and customers.
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