By ALEX MALM
Cranston was the host of a congressional kickoff event Wednesday morning but it wasn’t for any of the candidates with Cranston ties running for the 2nd Congressional …
By ALEX MALM
Cranston was the host of a congressional kickoff event Wednesday morning but it wasn’t for any of the candidates with Cranston ties running for the 2nd Congressional District.
From a podium made by her son Jonathan State Sen. Jessica de la Cruz announced her candidacy for congress at 39 West, a lounge in Knightsville.
“I’m running because after the 2020 election, Joe Biden promised us moderation and unity, but instead, we got economic chaos and increasing division,” said de la Cruz. “I’m running because as a state senator, every single day my inbox is filled with messages from Rhode Islanders who are struggling to feed their families, to put gas in their vehicles, to pay their bills and make ends meet. Rhode Islanders need relief now, Rhode Islanders need change now.”
de la Cruz, described herself as a lifelong Rhode Island, a “proud daughter of Portuguese immigrants,” and a working mom of three boys.
She is currently a State Senator representing Burrillville, Glocester and North Smithfield. She was first elected in 2018. The 40-year-old currently lives in North Smithfield with her husband David and her three children. The family stood behind her among other supporters during the campaign kickoff.
During her speech de la Cruz pointed to fighting against the closure of Burrillville’s Zambarano Hospital as an example of a bipartisan effort during her time at the State House.
“I worked across the aisle with Democrats to save this vital hospital for the patients and families who depend on it,” said de la Cruz. “I brought together hospital workers, patients, families, advocacy groups, and unions to speak with one voice about the importance of Zambarano Hospital and thankfully, we were heard. In this year’s new state budget, funds have been allocated to make sure that the hospital remains open, and the patients get the care they deserve. That’s the kind of determination and leadership I’ll bring to Congress.”
de la Cruz also made an effort to separate herself from the rest of the field.
“I’m running because when I look at the field of candidates vying for this seat, all I see are a bunch of millionaires and career politicians who are completely out of touch with the pain Rhode Islanders are experiencing right now,” said de la Cruz. “As a mother of three young children who has spent the last 2 years juggling work, distance learning, helping neighbors in need and balancing an increasingly tight household budget, I understand that pain all too well.”
Shortly after the kickoff event, General Treasurer Seth Magaziner, who is running for the seat as a Democrat released a statement saying, “The first vote Senator de la Cruz will take is to turn over control of Congress to extremist Republicans like Kevin McCarthy who will repeal the Affordable Care Act, privatize social security, and end the January 6 commission, paving the way for the return of Donald Trump.”
“I am running because there are real things Congress can do to help working families like lowering the cost of prescription drugs, making preschool universal and creating clean energy jobs that will help reduce our dependence on dictators like Putin,” the statement read.
Asked if is open to the endorsement of Donald Trump, de la Cruz said, “I’m not seeking any endorsements, just the endorsement of District 2.”
de la Cruz was also asked about Daylight Savings Time.
“I think we should just keep it as is,” she said .
Other Republicans who have announced their intentions to run include former Cranston Mayor Allan Fung, and former state Rep. Robert Lancia.
The Democratic side includes Magaziner, former state Rep. Edwin Pacheco, former Langevin staffer Joy Fox, Cameron Moquin, Omar Bah, Sarah Morgenthau, and Michael Neary.
In closing, de la Cruz said, “this election is our chance to make change, to send a message to Washington by sending a regular working mom to Congress to represent regular working people.”
“In asking for your vote, I promise I won’t forget who I am, where I come from, and who I represent. That’s my promise to you,” said de la Cruz.
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