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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez faces insurance pro challenger

By Matthew Sellers

Photo Courtesy of Marty Dolan for Congress

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC to most) is seen as a shoe-inn for the 700,000 population of the 14th Congressional District that includes the east Bronx neighborhoods of Hunts Point, Co-Op City, Throggs Neck and Parkchester, plus the Queens neighborhoods of Astoria, East Elmhurst and part of Jackson Heights. 

In 2022, AOC comfortably took the district with almost 70% of the vote – now 66-year-old Marty Dolan, a director at Bermuda’s Fleming Re and previously head of insurance at Jefferies, thinks that the electorate may be ready to rethink their candidate.

“The Radicals can’t deliver more than breadcrumbs when they ignore that the primary breadwinners are leaving and brush off taxpayer concerns in favor of abstract populist ideologies. Enough is enough,” he said in his campaign announcement.

“The June 25, 2024, primary will be a referendum: are we better or worse off from following Radical policies? We are all for the ‘progress’ implied by the word Progressive. However, within the Progressive movement, there are Radicals whose influence on the Democratic Party is overweight,” he continued.

“The impact in NYC is obvious: bail reform a disaster, the National Guard in the subway, toothpaste locked up in drugstores but criminals running free, scarce resources directed to immigrants coming from all over the world,” he concluded.

Dolan has a number of ideas that he’s running on:

Bronx-specific congestion charges

“The 20 million people zooming in and out every year are not paying their fair share,” he said, while at the same time contributing to local problems such as traffic congestion, asthma and other health impacts,” he told the Bronx Times.

Moving pension and Medicare costs to the federal government

 He estimates that would decrease taxes by 25% to 30%, which would stop the flight of the “backbone of the city” (those earning 100-200k) to states like Florida.

New taxes

Federal value added tax and a tax on luxury good sales to lower the national debt and lower NY taxes.

Address immigration

They are “taking benefits from the people in the city who need them.”

Whichever way you look at it, Dolan has a huge hill to climb – FEC records show that Dolan has just under $35,000 in funds. AOC? $6 million.

Who is Martin Dolan?

Marty Dolan was born in Jersey City, one of 10 children of an immigrant doctor from Argentina.

The family settled in a two bedroom house in Irvington NY where Marty’s Dad and Mom were the village Doctor and Nurse for over 40 years.

Marty graduated from Union College with a degree in economics and a senior thesis which identified the causes of NYC’s 1970’s bankruptcy and later graduated from Harvard Business School as the class marshal with an MBA and a focus on international business.

Marty worked originally as a strategy consultant helping businesses solve their core issues and then became a senior investment banker for 25 years working globally on the global risk insurance and life and pension sectors.

During this time, he focused on addressing many of the sector’s most important systemic dislocations, including:

  • The resolution of the sector’s $200 billion exposure to asbestos and pollution liabilities;

  • the $10 billion restructuring of Lloyd’s of London;

  • raising billions of dollars of capital following the WTC attack and Hurricane Katrina losses to help the sector recover;

  • acting as a lead advisor on the restructuring of AIG ($190 billion) and Hartford during the global financial crisis; and,

  • advising UST on its crisis recovery program.

Mr. Dolan advised on the formation of many innovative companies which redefined how capital providers accessed specialty insurance risks and became multi-billion dollar sector leaders including Admiral UK, Amlin, Catlin, Hiscox, Tarquin/Axis, Renaissance Re/DaVinci Re.  This work included extensive work with regulators to allow these new ventures to flourish.

Mr. Dolan also acted as a principal investor as part of these efforts, with his firms investing $400 million in Amlin, Axis Capital, and Harbourpoint; these investments later monetized at a multiple of invested capital. He has been a senior team leader and team builder at several banks including Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan.

He is currently the principal of Martin W. Dolan and Company, Incorporated where he advises new ventures in the AI, BioTech, and retail security industries and serves as a director of Fleming Reinsurance Ltd.

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