If you’re running for a seat in the state senate of any state and you wind up in the national news, it’s almost never good, unless your first appearance in the national news comes after your victory party. Julia Salazar hasn’t even won her primary yet, and she’s already making headlines (also, the NY primary situation is confusing, because Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez won her primary months ago, while Julia Salazar has yet to have hers (I assume state and federal primary elections are split up?).
So the ball got rolling with Tablet Magazine, which is a really great American-Jewish publication, which is most interesting insofar as Salazar is concerned because she is running as a Democratic Socialist who touts her background as a Colombian-Jewish immigrant, only she has been outed as a Catholic, former Republican from Florida (who reportedly has no Jewish family members).
Anyway, that lie might have been enough to sink the candidacy of a 27-year-old aiming to ride the coattails of Ocasio-Cortez, but then it gets super weird. In 2011, Julia Salazar was accused of trying to steal money from Kai Hernandez’s bank account. Kai Hernandez is the ex-wife of New York Mets legend (and occasional Seinfeld cameo) Keith Hernandez. Julia Salazar allegedly called a bank posing as Kai Hernandez twice in an attempt to gain access to the account and steal Kai Hernandez’s money. The bank called Kai Hernandez and played her recordings of the phone calls, and Kai — recognizing the voice — pinned it on Julia Salazar, a longtime family friend. Kai might have also mentioned that Julia Salazar was having an affair with her husband, Keith Hernandez (who is in his 60s). Hernandez denied the affair. Kai Hernandez also alleged that Salazar stole from her $11,800 in cash, $1,175 in Pottery Barn vouchers and $950 worth of wine while house-sitting for her.
Ultimately, charges did not move ahead, because the recordings were apparently not strong enough evidence to convict.
So, the charges were dropped, and the entire history of the case might have gone away — because police records on dropped cases that are older than five years typically are not kept — EXCEPT that two years later, Julia Salazar sued Kai Hernandez for defamation, claiming that Kai Hernandez called the bank and posed as Julia Salazar and pretended to try and steal Kai’s money in order to humiliate the woman who was allegedly having an affair with Keith Hernandez. That case was either settled or dropped shortly before trial, depending on who one believes. However, the end result is that all of the police records and audio files and phone calls were memorialized in the public record, allowing journalists to dig them up and use them against a Catholic Republican turned Jewish immigrant who may or may not have had an affair with baseball legend Keith Hernandez.
But really, the best thing about all of this is 1) at least she’s not yet the Democratic candidate because New York’s state primaries are so late in the game, and 2) Keith f**king Hernandez.
2018, y’all! It never stops being weird.