Great Neck Democrat Enters Stacked NY-03 Race in Quest to Unseat Santos

great neck candidate
Zak Malamed

Great Neck Democrat Enters Stacked NY-03 Race in Quest to Unseat Santos

A Democrat from Great Neck has entered a crowded field of candidates running for U.S. representative of New York’s 3rd Congressional District, all of whom wish to unseat lying Republican and alleged fraudster George Santos. 

Zak Malamed, 29, announced Monday his campaign for the office currently held by Santos, who was indicted last week on 13 counts of federal charges, including wire fraud, money laundering, theft of public funds and lying to Congress.

In his campaign announcement, Malamed paints himself as the “fresh face” in a stacked lineup of 2024 Democratic primary candidates – which so far includes former State Sen. Anna Kaplan, Nassau County Legislator Josh Lafazan, and Will Murphy, a Long Island attorney and college professor.

“NY-03 has always been a place where families like mine came to put down roots so their kids could grow up in a safe home, get a great public education and be part of a community deeply committed to taking care of one another,” Malamed said. “It has become too expensive and too hard to make a life here … In Congress, I’ll prioritize policies that ensure our community can offer future generations the same quality of life it has offered past ones.”

great neck zak malamed
Zak Malamed

Malamed spent his youth attending Great Neck’s public schools. He then attended University of Maryland where he started an advocacy group called Student Voice, which promotes equity in education.

Malamed is also the founder of a nonprofit called The Next 50, which helps get young Democrats elected to political leadership across the United States.

“I spent the last four years defeating MAGA Republicans across the country in some of the most competitive districts and states, and now, the reality is that the things that I had to fight outside of home, have come home,” Malamed said. “New Yorkers are hungry for fresh leadership, and this district will be crucial for taking back the majority in Washington—I’m ready to bring the fight and win this seat back.”

In his campaign launch video, Malamed emphasized his differences from Santos, primarily that his backstory is true. While Santos lied about being a descendant of Holocaust survivors, among many other parts of his background he admittedly lied about, Malamed says that his relatives were truly Holocaust victims and that he is “actually Jewish.”

“I’m running for Congress because I know first-hand that the issues facing New Yorkers are serious,” he says. “So maybe it’s time we have someone serious fighting for us in Washington.”

In addition to unseating Santos, Malamed hopes to take back Democratic majority in the U.S. Congress. Malamed proclaims that whether Santos wins his primary race or not, that he is the best Democrat to run against any Republican.

So far Santos has one Republican primary challenger in Kellen Curry, a former war veteran and J.P. Morgan vice president.

Santos has repeatedly doubled down on his intent to run for re-election in 2024 despite the impending federal trial and opposition from Nassau Republicans and constituents.