Eric Adams Waits on Ranked-Choice Tally in NYC Mayoral Primary Mayoral candidate Eric Adams. (Lev Radin/Sipa via AP)
By Eric Mack | Monday, 28 June 2021 12:44 PM
Ranked-choice voting has left New York City's leading Democrat mayoral candidate Eric Adams waiting, if not anticipating a messy counting process as mail-in ballots are left to be counted and challengers are not conceding victory.
"This is new territory for all of us," Adams told Politico.
"We know the votes must be counted," he continued. "We know there's a process. We're going to follow that process, but while that process is playing out, we're going to send a signal to New Yorkers: believe."
There are 120,000 absentee ballots still to be counted, along with 800,000 cast on election night and the ranked-choice tallies are slated to be run Tuesday, making it possible for runners-up Maya Wiley and Kathryn Garcia to close the gap on Adams, a Black former police captain.
"We're all acting as if it's done," Garcia pollster Adam Rosenblatt said. "The most important piece is still missing."
Wiley is not giving up hope either, noting how much ranked-choice voting can change the dynamic of the ultimate result.
"We have every reason to believe we can win this race," Wiley said, Politico reported. "It is not over."
The winner will face Republican nominee Curtis Sliwa. Current NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio is exiting at his term limit.
"We need to engage in a conversation," Adams told Politico. "We can't say, 'Let's start from scratch on Jan. 1.' That's unfair to New Yorkers.
"I'm going to encourage him to make his commissioners available to whomever would like to sit down with them and get a real briefing on what is happening in our agencies."
Adams is already setting up the transition, showing confidence New York City will reelect the Democrat nominee.
"The responsible thing to do for Eric now is to think ahead to the general election and how he would govern as mayor," Adams adviser Evan Thies told Politico. "While awaiting the process and acknowledging it's not over, he’s still making sure he is prepared to hit the ground running."
An attention-to-crime platform is what lifted Adams in the primary lead and will be a model for Democrats going forward, he says.
"Look at me and you're seeing the future of the Democratic Party," Adams said, Politico reported. "If the Democratic Party fails to recognize what we did here in New York, they're going to have a problem in the midterm elections, and they're going to have a problem in the presidential election."
Wiley, a Black progressive woman, ran on cutting funding to the police department. She is in second currently, 75,000 votes behind but expecting to gain some traction in the ranked-choice tally Tuesday, along with Garcia, according to Politico.
"In a lot of the districts where [absentee] ballots have been returned — these are vote-rich areas; these are areas where Kathryn is winning handily," Garcia's pollster Rosenblatt told Politico. "There are certainly Manhattan districts. There are Queens and Brooklyn districts in the mix as well."
The 124,000 absentee ballots returned as of Sunday, among 200,000 requested, will not be counted until July, according to Politico.
The ranked-choice voting process is going to come under intense scrutiny if a white woman like Garcia overcomes Wiley and Adams, two Black candidates, according to Fordham University political science professor Christina Greer.
"The visual looks really bad that Eric Adams gets 100,000 more votes than Garcia" on election night, "and this white woman rolls into Gracie Mansion," Greer told Politico.