Eric Adams narrowly edges Kathryn Garcia in preliminary ranked-choice results, slams BOE over vote total

It’s gonna be a nail-biter!

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams’ lead in the Democratic primary shrank to just two percentage points Tuesday as Kathryn Garcia vaulted past Maya Wiley into second place under the Big Apple’s new ranked-choice voting system.

Adams ultimately led with 51.1 percent of the vote, while Garcia — the former Sanitation Commissioner — received 48.9 percent of the votes after the Board of Elections tallied the second-through-fifth place choices made by New York voters during the June 22 contest.

But there is just a 15,908-vote difference between Adams and Garcia in the final 11th round of the runoff, according to BOE’s results.

These results are still preliminary, as they only include the votes cast during early voting and on Primary Day — and do not include the 124,000-plus absentee ballots.

The Adams’ campaign responded by slamming the BOE in a statement that questioned the competence of the elections administrator — specifically pointing to a 100,000-plus jump in the number of ballots compared to the tallies reported election night.

The BOE counted 941,832 votes for mayor in its ranked-choice voting tally, up from 799,827 included in its unofficial tallies posted on primary night, June 22.

Kathryn Garcia swings through the Union Square Green Market earlier in June.
Kathryn Garcia has moved into second place with 48.9 percent of the votes.
Matthew McDermott

“The vote total just released by the Board of Elections is 100,000-plus more than the total announced on election night, raising serious questions. We have asked the Board of Elections to explain such a massive increase and other irregularities before we comment on the Ranked Choice Voting projection,” said a spokesman for Adams.

“We remain confident that Eric Adams will be the next mayor of New York because he put together a historic five-borough working class coalition of New Yorkers to make our city a safer, fairer, more affordable place,” he added.

In a tweeted statement, the BOE said it is “working with our RCV technical staff to identify where the discrepancy occurred. We ask the public, elected officials and candidates to have patience.”

However, Adams appeared to benefit most from the discrepancy, which yielded him an additional 17,000 first-choice votes compared to the figures reported primary night — Garcia picked up 12,000 votes while Maya Wiley netted 10,000.

An analysis of the results shows that Garcia closed the gap by picking up more than 185,000 votes through the ranked-choice system, while Adams gained 98,000.

For her part, Garcia celebrated the dramatic shift in the race, but urged her supporters and the city to wait for the BOE to count the still-outstanding absentee ballots and finalize the election results.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams narrowly edged former Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia to hang onto first place in the Democratic primary under the preliminary results from the Big Apple's new instant runoff system.
Eric Adams had slightly over 51 percent of the vote.

“Once all the votes are counted, I know everyone will support the Democratic nominee and that’s exactly what I intend to do. We look forward to the final results,” she said in a statement. “Democracy is worth waiting for.”

Wiley, a civil rights attorney and former top aide to Mayor Bill de Blasio, was narrowly edged out by Garcia in the 10th round of the ranked-choice voting — and her votes overwhelmingly went to Garcia, figures show.

The gap between the two leading women candidates was just 3,806 votes.

Wiley, too, urged voters to remain patient.

“I said on election night, we must allow the democratic process to continue and count every vote so that New Yorkers have faith in our democracy and government. And we must all support its results,” she said in a statement. 

One-time leading contender Andrew Yang — the 2023 presidential hopeful who vaulted to the top of the field on the strength of his name recognition — was eliminated in the 9th round of the run-off, after getting 14.9 percent of the vote.

The BOE’s tallies showed that nearly 37,000 of Yang’s voters listed Garcia as their next candidate pick while 31,000 opted for Adams, in a reversal of many pre-primary polls.

A top Yang advisor chalked that reversal up to the decision to campaign with Garcia in the closing days of the race.

Mayoral candidate Eric Adams after casting his vote in the mayoral primary election at PS 81.
Mayoral candidate Eric Adams after casting his vote in the mayoral primary election at PS 81.James Keivom

Polling before the race showed that Wiley and Garcia supporters were likely to rank each other as their second choices.

“Every poll that was conducted throughout the mayor’s race showed Eric Adams winning most of Yang’s voters,” said Chris Coffey, a top strategist for Yang’s run. “The Garcia-Yang alliance seems to have stopped that and shows that ranked-choice voting alliances can really pay off, as this seems to have done for Kathryn.”

There remains one big wild-card in the race — the still-to-counted 124,000 absentee ballots that have been mailed back to BOE offices so far.

Under state law, elections officials could not begin opening the envelopes until Monday — and the Board of Elections did not include them in this calculation.

The BOE says plans to have most of those votes counted by July 6 and will include them when they rerun the election results on that date.

Little will be known about how the absentee ballots fall until then — but an analysis by The Post, published Tuesday, revealed that the bulk of those votes came from parts of the city friendly to both Adams and Garcia.

Of the 124,000 ballots mailed back as of Sunday, 55,000 are from Assembly districts that backed Adams during the first round, while 39,000 are from districts that went for Garcia.

Metro | New York Post

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