With 93 percent of the precincts reporting, New York’s public advocate Bill de Blasio emerged at the top of a crowded Democratic primary field in the NYC mayoral election on Tuesday evening, slowly edging towards securing 40 percent of the vote, the margin needed to avoid a runoff election.
It could be hours, however, before it’s clear whether de Blasio has enough votes to avoid a runoff election with second-place Democratic vote-getter, former city comptroller William C. Thompson Jr.
Meanwhile, New York City Council speaker Christine Quinn was in third place, with 15% of the vote, Tuesday evening. Anthony Weiner, running in 5th place, was the first of the candidates to concede. “We had the best ideas,” Weiner told reporters. “Sadly, I was an imperfect messenger.” As he was driving away, Weiner flipped off reporters as a final gesture in race he was destined to lose because of his blatant sexting and ongoing Internet nudity.
A photo of our video (on the screen in our truck) of Weiner in his car with his middle finger up. pic.twitter.com/377kUWpSq2
— Lindsey Christ (@LindseyChrist) September 11, 2013
Whoever wins the Democratic primary will face the city’s Republican nominee in the race to succeed three-term mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Like Los Angeles’ recent mayoral election, the New York mayoral contest split the city’s glittering entertainment industry community. As the first woman and openly gay candidate, Quinn drew an A-list roster of celebrity supporters, but so did de Blasio, who is married to an African-American woman and whose Afro-sporting teenage son starred in one of the campaign’s most celebrated commercials.
De Blasio’s supporters included former fireman Steve Buscemi, who once was arrested alongside de Blasio during a protest over a firehouse closure. Even New York’s large and active LGBT community and its supporters was split between the two Democratic frontrunners.
Quinn, for example, was supported by singer Lance Bass, actor Neil Patrick Harris, Whoopi Goldberg and Rob Reiner. Soon-to-be MSNBC talk show host Alec Baldwin backed de Blasio, as did hip-hop star Russell Simmons.
The public advocate’s campaign was aided by an “LGBT for BdB” gala whose hosts included Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon and Tony Award-winning actor Alan Cumming. The “LGBT for Quinn” fundraiser was headlined by actor-playwright Harvey Fierstein and actors Cheyenne Jackson and George Takei, along with Bass, Harris, Reiner and Gunn.
Quinn donors also included Tom Hanks and Jon Bon Jovi, while de Blasio received contributions from Paul Simon, John Turturro and Susan Sarandon.