Democratic Primary: Well, it looks like my pre-election predictions were sort of right. I slightly underestimated de Blasio and Thompson while overestimating Quinn. However, I did accurately predict that Anthony Weiner would come in 5th place behind John Liu, even though none of the polls showed Liu ahead. I’d say that’s some pretty good prognosticating.
The remaining question is whether de Blasio will have enough votes to avoid a runoff before the general election. With 98% of precincts reporting, he currently has 40.2% of the vote. If he can maintain that number after the recount (not necessarily a sure thing), then he’s in the clear.
Republican Primary: Having been denied an RSVP for the de Blasio event, I went to Republican Joe Lhota’s rally at the Midtown Hilton. Even though I was woefully under-dressed for the occasion, they still gave me a press pass and I took my place with the dozens of other journalists covering the festivities.
The race turned out to be closer than the polls suggested, which meant that the winner wasn’t called until just before 11pm. Unfortunately, my iPhone battery was dying and I had a train to catch so I was unable to stay for Lhota’s victory speech. But from talking to people at the rally, I was able to gauge that Lhota’s main theme is that he’s the best person to carry on Bloomberg’s work.
There is a big sense from Lhota supporters (and apparently even some Democrats) that de Blasio is just too liberal to run New York City. One man I talked to, a Joe Lhota look-alike that I dubbed “Faux Lhota,” said that de Blasio’s plan for taxing the wealthy would drive them out of the city, shrinking the tax base and ultimately hurting middle class families.
It should be an interesting race over the next few months as Lhota and de Blasio battle it out over Bloomberg’s legacy and their vision for the future of New York City.