Benjamin Franklin once said: “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” While this idiom remains true centuries later, Queens and Long Island residents must confront a third fundamental truth: our way of life is prohibitively expensive, breaking the backs of tens of thousands of families, who struggle under the weight of exorbitant healthcare costs and skyrocketing property taxes, while enduring longer, more expensive commutes. As third-generation Long Islanders, my family and I have needlessly experienced many of these hardships, and it’s no longer acceptable.
Recognizing the unsustainability of these alarming trends, and having been influenced by the Jesuit tradition of my alma mater Fordham University, which not only taught us to seek the greatest good in everything we do — but that we should also look after others as if they were our own:
I have decided to run for Congress to help write a new prescription for all that ails our country, and to help America return to the same ethos that carried us through depression and global conflict to mold us into the great nation we are today.
I was born in Glen Oaks, and raised in Bayside and Syosset. Descending from Jewish immigrants who arrived at Ellis Island from Europe and South America, and motivated by the stories and travels of meus avós (my grandparents), I was inspired to explore the world at an early age. In 1993, I was fortunate enough to travel to Indonesia, where I spent the summer living in a culture and society that vastly differed from my upbringing. My time in Indonesia proved transformative and would later inspire me to seek a life in public service.
As a teenager with parents in poor health, I assumed the roles and responsibilities of being a parent to my five younger siblings while attending Fordham University, where I earned my Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and Psychology. During my time at university, I had a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work as an intern at the United Nations. As an information analyst, I prepared analyses of Arabic- and French-language media coverage for Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s weekly press briefing. This internship eventually led to a career as a policy analyst, where I honed my analytical skills to help find new solutions to problems brought before the Security Council ranging from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to war in Darfur. I have since traveled to 83 more countries across six continents and learned a dozen languages to varying degrees of proficiency.
In 2007, I placed my career on hold to help keep my family’s decades-old insurance brokerage afloat. Unfortunately, as my father’s health continued to wane, I began a silent battle with metastatic prostate cancer. Despite being forced to the brink of bankruptcy by the exorbitant costs for treatment, I persevered and channeled my experiences and frustration into action by promoting equality and fighting against social injustice. Since 2010, I ventured into funding social-impact documentaries and shorts including Inequality for All (2013) and Saving Capitalism (2017); both of which showcase the detrimental and dilutive effect that the incessant clamoring for campaign funds by our elected representatives had in rendering our government unresponsive to the needs and concerns of ordinary Americans.
My advocacy will not stop there. New York’s Third Congressional District deserves a representative who will not only listen to your needs, but will also fight to address your concerns. From my first day as your Congressman, I will work diligently and steadfastly to achieve much-needed reforms, so elected representatives are once again beholden to their constituents, and not monied interests. I will also place emphasis on these essential issues for Queens and Long Island families.
- Ensure health care becomes an inalienable right for all Americans
- Create new opportunities to bring better-paying jobs to Queens and Long Island, and grow our region’s tax base
- Push for a significant increase in funding for our public schools and higher education institutions
- Promote substantial infrastructure investments that will improve our environment and address the challenges of climate change
To learn more about my ideas for the community, please visit joshforny.com/issues