Mondaire Jones
Mondaire Jones 117th U.S Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 17th district
In office
January 3, 2021 – January 3, 2023
Preceded byNita Lowey
Succeeded byMike Lawler
Personal details
Born (1987-05-18) May 18, 1987 (age 35)
Nyack, New York, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
EducationStanford University (BA)
Harvard University (JD)

Mondaire L. Jones[1] (born May 18, 1987[2]) is an American lawyer and politician who was the U.S. representative for New York's 17th congressional district from 2021 to 2023. The district includes most of central and northwestern Westchester County and all of Rockland County. A member of the Democratic Party, he and Ritchie Torres were the first openly gay Black members of Congress.[3]

As a member of Congress, Jones was described as a rising star on the progressive wing of the Democratic Party.[4] After redistricting, he sought reelection in 2022 in New York's 10th district after DCCC chair Sean Patrick Maloney chose to run in Jones's former district, but lost the primary to attorney Dan Goldman.[5]

He was appointed to the United States Commission on Civil Rights on January 3, 2023.[6]

Early life and education

Jones was born in Nyack, New York, and grew up in Spring Valley, New York, where he was raised by a single mother,[7] who worked multiple jobs to support him, and his grandparents.[8][9] He graduated from public schools in the East Ramapo Central School District.[10] He earned his bachelor's degree from Stanford University in 2009. After graduating from Stanford, Jones worked in the U.S. Department of Justice during the presidency of Barack Obama.[11][12] He then earned his Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School in 2013.[13][14]


After law school, Jones worked as a law clerk for Andrew L. Carter Jr. of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. He also worked four years for Davis Polk & Wardwell,[15] and one year with the Westchester County Law Department.[16][17] Jones also provided pro bono legal aid through The Legal Aid Society.[18]

U.S. House of Representatives



Main article: 2020 United States House of Representatives elections in New York § District 17

Jones announced his candidacy for the Democratic primary to represent the 17th district against 16-term incumbent Nita Lowey. Three months after he entered the race, Lowey announced that she would not seek reelection.[17][19] Jones advocated Medicare for All, the Green New Deal, and police reform.[20][15]

In a crowded eight-way Democratic primary—the real contest in this heavily Democratic district—Jones defeated attorney Adam Schleifer, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Evelyn Farkas, State Senator David Carlucci, and State Assemblyman David Buchwald, among others, winning 42% of the vote.[21] The Associated Press called the race for Jones on July 14, 2020, three weeks after the June 23 primary, the vote tabulation having been delayed because of a large number of absentee ballots due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[22]

In the general election, Jones faced Republican nominee Maureen McArdle Schulman, a former FDNY firefighter, as well as several third-party candidates.[23] The Associated Press called the race for Jones the day after election day.[24] Along with Ritchie Torres from New York's 15th congressional district, Jones is one of the first gay African Americans elected to the United States House of Representatives.[11]

2022 and aftermath

Main article: 2022 United States House of Representatives elections in New York § District 10

In 2022, Jones, whose congressional district had been redrawn, ran to represent New York's 10th congressional district. The 10th district was based in Manhattan and Brooklyn and did not include any of the territory that Jones had been representing. Jones lost the primary election to Dan Goldman.[25]

In December 2022, it was reported that Jones was planning to move to Sleepy Hollow, a village in New York's 17th congressional district, a swing district represented by Republican Mike Lawler. It has been speculated that Jones will run to represent the district in 2024.[26]

USPS lawsuit

On August 17, 2020, Jones filed suit in the Southern District of New York against President Donald Trump and Postmaster General Louis DeJoy to reverse recent changes made to the United States Postal Service (USPS) that affected the agency's ability to deliver mail, including absentee ballots.[27] In an opinion piece, Jones said he sued Trump and DeJoy "for violating the Constitution in their attempts to undermine the United States Postal Service and thwart free and fair elections this November."[28]

On September 21, 2020, U.S. District Court Judge Victor Marrero granted an injunction against the USPS that required it to restore overtime and treat all mail-in ballots as First-Class.[29] Jones celebrated the decision, saying: "This injunction prescribes very specific, affirmative actions that the Postal Service must undertake to ensure a free and fair election, which is my constitutional right as someone who is running for office, and which is a constitutional right of everyone in this country who is eligible to vote."[30]


Jones was one of two African-American LGBT members of the 117th United States Congress, along with New York's Ritchie Torres.[31]

Jones voted to certify the 2020 United States presidential election and later voted to impeach during Trump's second impeachment. He and Ted Lieu cowrote a letter to the Attorney Grievance Committee of the New York State Supreme Court-Appellate Division asking for Rudy Giuliani to be disbarred due to his role in the January 6 United States Capitol attack.[32]

Jones successfully lobbied U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to halt the deportation of Paul Pierrilus, who was scheduled to be the last person to be deported during the Trump administration. Pierrilus, a constituent of Jones's, was to be deported to Haiti, a country he had never been to, before Jones intervened.[33]

Jones voted for the American Rescue Plan, the PRO Act, Equality Act, For the People Act, George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, and the Bipartisan Background Checks Act.[34]

Jones, Senator Ed Markey, Representative Hank Johnson, and House Judiciary chair Jerry Nadler pushed for an expansion of the Supreme Court from 9 seats to 13.[35] Around the same time, Jones called for a "Third Reconstruction" in a Washington Post opinion piece.[36]

Committee assignments

Caucus memberships

Personal life

Jones came out as gay when he was 24.[11][12] He is a member of the First Baptist Church of Spring Valley.[44]

In June 2020, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the first gay Pride parade, Queerty named Jones among the 50 heroes "leading the nation toward equality, acceptance, and dignity for all people."[45][46]

Electoral history


Democratic primary, 2020 New York's 17th congressional district election[47]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mondaire Jones 32,796 41.91%
Democratic Adam Schleifer 12,732 16.27%
Democratic Evelyn Farkas 12,210 15.60%
Democratic David Carlucci 8,649 11.05%
Democratic David Buchwald 6,673 8.53%
Democratic Asha Castleberry-Hernandez 2,062 2.64%
Democratic Allison Fine 1,588 2.03%
Democratic Catherine Parker 1,539 1.97%
Total votes 78,246 100%
General election, 2020 New York's 17th congressional district election[48]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Mondaire Jones 183,975 55.27%
Working Families Mondaire Jones 13,378 4.02%
Total Mondaire Jones 197,353 59.29%
Republican Maureen McArdle Schulman 117,307 35.25%
Conservative Yehudis Gottesfeld 8,887 2.67%
Education. Community. Law. Joshua Eisen 6,363 1.91%
SAM Michael Parietti 2,745 0.82%
Write-in 197 0.06%
Total votes 332,852 100%
Democratic hold


Democratic primary, 2022 New York's 10th congressional district election
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Dan Goldman 16,686 25.8
Democratic Yuh-Line Niou 15,380 23.7
Democratic Mondaire Jones (incumbent)[a] 11,777 18.2
Democratic Carlina Rivera 10,985 17.0
Democratic Jo Anne Simon 3,991 6.2
Democratic Elizabeth Holtzman 2,845 4.4
Democratic Jimmy Li 777 1.2
Democratic Yan Xiong 686 1.1
Democratic Maud Maron 578 0.9
Democratic Bill de Blasio (withdrawn) 477 0.7
Democratic Brian Robinson 322 0.5
Democratic Peter Gleason 147 0.2
Democratic Quanda Francis 121 0.2
Total votes 64,772 100.0

See also


  1. ^ Source Information U.S., Index to Public Records, 1994-2019 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2020. Original data: Voter Registration Lists, Public Record Filings, Historical Residential Records, and Other Household Database Listings.
  2. ^ @MondaireJones (May 18, 2020). "Today's my 33rd birthday and all I want is #MedicareForAll, a #GreenNewDeal, #StudentDebtForgiveness, and a country that values working people over corporate profits" (Tweet). Retrieved July 24, 2020 – via Twitter.
  3. ^ Baird, Addy (November 3, 2020). "Ritchie Torres Has Made History As The First Openly Gay Black Member Of Congress". BuzzFeed News. Retrieved November 4, 2020.
  4. ^ Solender, Andrew (August 1, 2022). "Progressive rising star Mondaire Jones fights for his political life". Axios. Retrieved January 4, 2023.
  5. ^ Solender, Andrew (August 24, 2022). "Former impeachment lawyer Dan Goldman unseats Rep. Mondaire Jones in New York". Axios. Retrieved September 1, 2022.
  6. ^ "APPOINTMENT OF INDIVIDUAL TO THE COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS" (PDF). Congressional Record. 168 (204): H10549. January 3, 2023.
  7. ^ Woodson, A. J. (December 23, 2019). "Mondaire Jones Interview". Black Westchester Magazine. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
  8. ^ Jones, Mondaire (November 24, 2019). "Why I'm Running for Congress". Medium. Retrieved July 2, 2020.
  9. ^ Ratan, Kira (December 18, 2019). "For Mondaire Jones, politics is personal". Tower. The Masters School. Retrieved June 27, 2020.
  10. ^ Lieberman, Steve. "Nita Lowey faces challenger from the left: Mondaire Jones, progressive Democrat, announces 2020 run". The Journal News. Retrieved June 17, 2020.
  11. ^ a b c Ruiz, Michelle (June 24, 2020). "Ritchie Torres and Mondaire Jones Are Poised to Make LGBTQ+ History in Congress". Vogue. Retrieved June 26, 2020.
  12. ^ a b Coltin, Jeff (October 7, 2019). "The black, gay Harvard grad taking on Nita Lowey". City & State. Retrieved June 29, 2020.
  13. ^ Failla, Zak (June 24, 2020). "Mondaire Jones Holds Big Lead In Race To Take Over Nita Lowey's Congressional Seat". White Plains Daily Voice. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
  14. ^ Lach, Eric (June 24, 2020). "Campaigning During the Coronavirus: The Race for New York's Seventeenth Congressional District". The New Yorker. Retrieved June 29, 2020.
  15. ^ a b Solender, Andrew (November 1, 2019). "Can Mondaire Jones Make History In NY17?". The River. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
  16. ^ Carlisle, Madeleine (June 24, 2020). "Two Democratic Candidates Poised To Become the First Openly Gay Black Congressmen". Time. Retrieved June 26, 2020.
  17. ^ a b Kassel, Matthew (May 13, 2020). "From Washington to Westchester: the Obama Justice Department fellow running for Lowey's seat". Jewish Insider. Retrieved June 17, 2020.
  18. ^ "Jones, Mondaire". LGBTQ Victory Fund. 2020. Retrieved June 29, 2020.
  19. ^ Kassel, Matthew (June 25, 2020). "Mondaire Jones has big plans and big shoes to fill in Congress". Jewish Insider. Retrieved June 29, 2020.
  20. ^ Deconstructed (June 25, 2020). "Deconstructed Podcast: The Rise of the Left (With Mondaire Jones)". The Intercept. Retrieved June 27, 2020.
  21. ^ "New York Primary Election Results: 17th Congressional District". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved June 29, 2020.
  22. ^ Rubinstein, Dana (July 14, 2020). "Mondaire Jones Rides Insurgent Wave to a House Primary Win in N.Y." The New York Times. Retrieved July 17, 2020.
  23. ^ "Meet The Candidate: McArdle-Schulman For Congress In NY17". Mid Hudson Valley, NY Patch. September 29, 2020. Retrieved November 17, 2020.
  24. ^ "Democrat Mondaire Jones wins election to U.S. House in New York's 17th Congressional District". AP NEWS. November 4, 2020. Retrieved November 17, 2020.
  25. ^ Durkin, Erin; Anuta, Joe; Chadha, Janaki (August 24, 2022). "Dan Goldman wins free-for-all New York House seat". Politico. Retrieved August 24, 2022.
  26. ^ "To Brooklyn and back again – Mondaire Jones is moving to the 17th Congressional District". City & State NY. Retrieved January 4, 2023.
  27. ^ Lungariello, Mark (August 17, 2020). "Local candidates sue Donald Trump, Louis DeJoy over U.S. Postal Service funding". LoHud. Rockland/Westchester Journal News. Retrieved September 23, 2020.
  28. ^ Jones, Mondaire (August 26, 2020). "Why I'm Suing President Trump and Postmaster General DeJoy: Mondaire Jones". LoHud. Rockland/Westchester Journal News. Retrieved September 23, 2020.
  29. ^ Hallum, Mark (September 21, 2020). "Federal court requires USPS to restore overtime and give ballots First-Class treatment". AM NY. Retrieved September 23, 2020.
  30. ^ Heckman, Jory (September 22, 2020). "Federal court orders USPS to outline 'necessary' steps to reverse mail delays". Federal News Network. Retrieved September 23, 2020.
  31. ^ Avery, Dan (November 6, 2020). "Mondaire Jones joins Ritchie Torres as first gay Black men elected to Congress". NBC News. Retrieved January 24, 2021.
  32. ^ Sisak, Michael R. (January 12, 2021). "Bar association seeks Giuliani ban over 'combat' remarks". ABC News. Retrieved April 23, 2021.
  33. ^ Hernandez, Arelis (January 20, 2021). "In one of its last acts, Trump administration tried to deport man to Haiti who has never been there". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on January 23, 2021. Retrieved January 24, 2021.
  34. ^ "Mondaire Jones -- Recent Votes". Clerk of the House. Retrieved March 16, 2021.
  35. ^ Grim, Ryan (April 14, 2021). "House and Senate Democrats Plan Bill to Add Four Justices to Supreme Court". The Intercept. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
  36. ^ Jones, Mondaire (April 12, 2021). "Opinion: Now is the time for a Third Reconstruction — abolishing Jim Crow once and for all". The Washington Post. Retrieved April 22, 2021.
  37. ^ Adams, Biba (November 20, 2020). "Mondaire Jones Named Freshman Representative to House Leadership". The Grio. Retrieved November 20, 2020.
  38. ^ "Chairman Nadler Statement on New Members Nominated to the House Judiciary Committee". House Committee on the Judiciary. December 18, 2020. Retrieved December 22, 2020.
  39. ^ @RepJones (January 5, 2021). "Humbled to announce my nomination to @EdLaborCmte" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  40. ^ a b c "Committees and Caucuses | Representative Mondaire Jones". January 3, 2021. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  41. ^ @RepJones (January 26, 2021). "I'm honored to be appointed to the House Ethics Committee!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  42. ^ "Caucus Members". Congressional Progressive Caucus. Retrieved March 29, 2021.
  43. ^ Dunne, Allison (December 22, 2020). "Congressman-Elect Jones Will Be On The LGBTQ Caucus, Judiciary Committee". Retrieved January 8, 2021.
  44. ^ "Meet Mondaire Jones". Mondaire for Congress. 2020. Retrieved June 29, 2020.
  45. ^ "Queerty Pride50 2020 Honorees". Queerty. Retrieved June 30, 2020.
  46. ^ "9 queer political figures creating a more perfect union this election year". Queerty. July 2, 2020. Retrieved July 28, 2020.
  47. ^ "Live results: 2020 New York House primaries". Washington Post. Archived from the original on November 4, 2020. Retrieved November 17, 2020.
  48. ^ "2020 Election Results". New York State Board of Elections. Retrieved December 3, 2020.
  1. ^ Due to redistricting, Mondaire Jones decided to move to NY-10, which is not connected by territory to his home district of NY-17.
U.S. House of Representatives Preceded byNita Lowey Member of the U.S. House of Representativesfrom New York's 17th congressional district 2021–2023 Succeeded byMike Lawler U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial) Preceded byChris Jacobsas former U.S. Representative Order of precedence of the United Statesas former U.S. Representative Succeeded byJim Gardneras former U.S. Representative