Queens, New York is home to another massive political upset. Tiffany Cabán claimed victory Tuesday night after nosing ahead of six other contenders in the Queens District Attorney primary race.
Although CNN reports that the race is still too close to call as of Wednesday afternoon, Cabán leads by 1.27% with 3,400 absentee ballots still outstanding. If the vote tally ends in a margin less than half of 1%, a manual recount will be triggered, per Valerie Vazquez, communications director of the election board.
Cabán’s leading opponent is Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, who had the backing of traditional Queen’s Democrats. Cabán represents a new wave of the left as she held the endorsements from Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.
Cabán was best known for her policy which would decriminalize sex-work. She is 31-years-old and identifies as queer.
“We built a campaign that said every community deserves justice, that every community deserves fair treatment,” Cabán said late Tuesday night after claiming victory. “We built a campaign to reduce recidivism, to decriminalize poverty, to end mass incarceration, to protect our immigrant communities, to keep people in their communities with access to services and support.”
Cabán grew up in Queens to two Puerto Rican parents. Here’s what you need to know about Cabán’s family:
1. Cabán Was Born to Two Puerto Rican Parents in Richmond Hill, Queens
Tiffany Cabán was born to two Puerto Rican parents in Queens, according to her campaign website.
She attended several schools in the Queens area before heading to Pennsylvania to attend Penn State University for her bachelor’s degree.
“Tiffany attended PS 62 in Richmond Hill and JHS 210 Elizabeth Blackwell in Woodhaven, and later attended St. Francis Preparatory High School in Fresh Meadows,” Cabán’s about section on her campaign website said.
After her time in high school, she went to PSU and majored in Crime, Law, and Justice. She then went to New York Law School and earned her Juris Doctorate.
2. Cabán’s Father Worked as an Elevator Mechanic
Growing up, Tiffany Cabán’s father worked as an elevator mechanic. Both of her parents grew up in the Woodside Housing Projects in Queens, and her experience and her parent’s experiences growing up in the area they did affected the way she ran her race.
“My parents grew up in the Woodside Housing Projects. Those are over-policed, over-criminalized, resource-starved communities. And if there is one thing that we know from my experience as a Public Defender, my experience in those communities, is that these reforms that we’re talking about – they’re not radical. They’re just common sense,” Cabán said in front of a group of reporters in the midst of her campaign.
3. Cabán’s Mother Worked in Child-Care
When her father was out working on broken elevators, Cabán’s mother took care of other people’s children, according to Cabán’s website.
During election day, Cabán spent a chunk of her time around the area where her parents grew up – the Woodside Housing Projects.
“I knew Tiffany before she was born,” one friend of her parents said as Cabán campaigned and encouraged people to vote around the Woodside Projects.
4. Cabán Has Family in Law Enforcement
Although Cabán has family members who are police officers, it is not stopping her from wanting to enforce policies that would keep law enforcement accountable.
“I have police officers in my family. I am not anti-police officer, but any good police officer will tell you that they’re pretty anti-bad cop, too,” Cabán said in a NowThis interview.
As well as holding bad police officers accountable, Cabán holds the stance that ICE agents should also face punishment if they are found abusing their powers.
5. Cabán Is a Proud Mom of Two Rescue Dogs
Tiffany Cabán is a “proud mom of two rescue dogs, Natalie and Coltrane,” according to her campaign website.
Throughout her campaign, Cabán loved to relax and recharge with her tow pups. She even took to Instagram to express how lucky she is to be the mom of Natalie and Coltrane.
“In order to be a good candidate, manager, and colleague, you need to carve out self-care time to check in with yourself and recharge. I’m fortunate to have the ability to do that (not everyone does),” Cabán wrote in a post featuring her two dogs. “This is what my self-care time looks like these days.”