Former police captain and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams has won the Democratic primary for mayor of New York City, beating out the city’s former sanitation chief, Kathryn Garcia, by a single percentage point. Civil rights attorney Maya Wiley was left in third place.
New York’s Democratic voters, for the first time, chose their candidate through ranked-choice voting, in which voters picked their top five candidates in order of preference. Since none of the candidates initially got more than 50 percent of the vote, they went through a process of elimination through rounds of counting, leaving Adams, Garcia and Wiley in the top three spots. By Tuesday night, tabulation left Adams the winner.
Much of the focus of the primary election, in the heavily Democratic-voting city, was on economic recovery after the coronavirus pandemic, which virtually emptied New York’s normally busy streets. In addition, the racial and socioeconomic divisions laid bare by the pandemic were an issue continuously brought up by Garcia, Wiley and candidate Andrew Yang, who conceded the race weeks before the outcome.
However, recent spikes in crime and violence throughout the Five Boroughs became of increasing concern to voters and Adams, who had decades of experience with the New York City Police Department swiftly capitalized on his law enforcement background.
“While there are still some very small amounts of votes to be counted, the results are clear: an historical, diverse, five-borough coalition led by working-class New Yorkers has led us to victory in the Democratic primary for Mayor of New York City,” Adams said in a July 6 statement, “Now we must focus on winning in November so that we can deliver on the promise of this great city for those who are struggling, who are underserved, and those who are committed to a safe, fair, affordable future for all New Yorkers.”
Several thousand votes remain to be counted, according to The New York Times, but Adams’ campaign said Garcia did not have enough votes to catch him. Neither Garcia, nor Wiley have offered concessions.
With the win, Adams will go on to the city’s general election on November 2, when he will face Republican Curtis Sliwa, talk show host and founder of the civilian patrol group the Guardian Angels.