NYC mayor race: Eric Adams holds narrow lead as thousands of absentee ballots tallied

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 (Independent)
(Independent)

Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams maintains a narrow lead in the race for New York City’s next mayor, as elections officials tallied thousands of absentee ballots in the city’s Democratic primary.

Mr Adams – a former New York City Police Department officer and state legislator – now holds a 1 per cent lead over the city’s former sanitation director Kathryn Garcia.

The latest preliminary count from the city’s Board of Elections includes roughly 125,000 absentee ballots, which voters had until 29 June to submit in time for the primary election.

Mr Adams now leads with roughly 8,000 votes.

In the city’s first-ever ranked-choice voting system, voters selected up to five candidates in order of preference in the citywide races on the ballot.

No candidate in the mayoral race won more than 50 per cent of the first-choice votes, so a process of elimination began. After lower-ranked candidates were eliminated from the race, voters’ other picks were distributed – round by round – to determine the winner. The process stands in contrast to a two-round runoff, in which candidates who did not win a simple majority vote then face off in a second election.

Pollsters predicted that the absentee ballots would generally favour Ms Garcia, tightening the gap between her and Mr Adams, with progressive candidate Maya Wiley holding steady in third place.

Following the first round of results from Election Day, Mr Adams was leading by nearly 10 percentage points, which shrank after the ranked-choice results were tallied.

In a corrected tally after an initially botched roll out of additional ranked-choice results, Mr Adams was leading Ms Garcia by fewer than 15,000 votes, or a margin of roughly 2 per cent, with Ms Wiley trailing by only 347 votes.

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