It took two weeks, but we finally have a winner in the New York City’s Democratic mayoral primary. He’s Eric Adams, the pro-cop candidate.
Adams held a substantial lead in the actual voting. He was hands-down the candidate a plurality of voters said should be the Democrats’ nominee.
However, the convoluted ranked-choice voting methodology caused his lead to shrink and almost disappear. As things stand now, he leads the second-place candidate (who finished third in the raw voting) by only 8,000 — about one percentage point. Before the ranked-choice method kicked in, he led that candidate by about 13 points.
Reportedly, there aren’t enough uncounted votes remaining to overcome the current margin, slim though it is. Thus, Adams is now the projected winner of the race. He is virtually certain to defeat his Republican opponent in November.
Adams’ victory is a win for policing. He rejected calls to defund the police and, in fact, advocated more police funding and more actual policing.
Whether this translates into anything like a return to the proactive and highly effective policing of the Giuliani era remains to be seen. My guess is that it won’t. But at least policing in the city is unlikely to get worse, as it would have if a different candidate, especially the one backed by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, had prevailed. (That candidate finished second in the raw voting and third in the final count.)
No discussion of a big city Dem primary would be complete without a note on identity politics. Adams is Black. The eventual runner-up is Latina. Andrew Yang, an Asian-American, finished fourth.
Yang encouraged his supporters to make the Latina their second choice in the ranking of candidates. Many did so. That’s a major reason why she closed the gap so substantially after the ranked-choice system kicked in.
Adams accused the Asian and the Latina of ganging up on him. He called it “a cynical attempt to disenfranchise Black voters.”
Nonsense. The Latina candidate’s views are more in line with Yang’s than Adams’ are. And Blacks were not disenfranchised. They were free to favor Black candidates in the rankings, if they were racist enough to so desire.
I’m glad Adams won, but you won’t be hearing three cheers from me. Two at the most.