Joe Crowley endorses Meng for the Ackerman seat, and another Crowley throws her hat in anyway

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Grace Meng. (Azi Paybarah via flickr)
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Minutes after Queens County Democratic chairman Joe Crowley threw his support behind Assemblywoman Grace Meng for Congress, his cousin, City Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley, announced her intention to run for the same seat.

"While the county organization as a whole may not want to endorse a family member of its Chairman, Elizabeth Crowley’s campaign will demonstrate that she is the best candidate to represent all of the communities in the new congressional district," said Elizabeth Crowley's spokesman Eric Yun.

Also entering the race today is Rory Lancman, an assemblyman who has been campaigning for Congress since long before the district lines were formalized. He is formally announcing his candidacy this afternoon on Northern Boulevard and 170th Street.

The makeup of the district creates a couple of competing dynamics. Asians make up the largest demographic bloc in the newly created 6th Congressional District, but there is also a large Jewish population. And of course Crowley's entry into the race dilutes the advantage Meng would otherwise have had as the woman in the race.

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Meng would be the first Asian-American elected to Congress from New York.