Marjorie Margolies, the Jewish lawmaker who was voted out of Congress nearly 20 years ago, is officially running to get her old seat back.
Even if she doesn’t win, the 70 year-old’s entry into the race is sure to have a huge impact on the crowded Democratic primary. Margolies is, of course, the mother-in-law of former first daughter Chelsea Clinton.
The 2010 marriage of Clinton to Margolies’ son Marc Mezvinsky was one of the most talked about interfaith wedding ceremonies in history. Presumably, Margolies will be able to enlist the help of former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to capture the open seat.
The district, which is roughly evenly split between Philadelphia and Montgomery County, is open because U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz has decided not to seek re-election in order to run for governor. Schwartz is currently both the only Jew and only woman in Pennsylvania’s congressional delegation.
The mere fact that Margolies was rumored to be considering a return to politics — and the potential fundraising prowess she might display — reportedly led some potential candidates, like former City Controller Jonathan Saidel, to opt out of the race.
Jewish lawmaker Daylin Leach has already announced his candidacy, as has State Rep. Brendan Boyle.
In 1994, Margolies cast the deciding vote in favor of Clinton’s budget, a move that many say led to her defeat in the year that the GOP retook the House. Since then, the one-time journalist has taught at the University of Pennsylvania and founded an organization devoted to the global empowerment of women.