Yang concedes in NYC mayor’s race
Andrew Yang on Tuesday night officially dropped out of the New York City mayor’s race, capping off a bid that started with a wave of support but ultimately hobbled in the final stretch.
“I am not going to be the next mayor of New York City based upon the numbers that have come in tonight,” Yang said at an election watch party the night of the Democratic primary vote. “I am conceding this race, though we’re not sure ultimately who the next mayor is going to be. But whoever that person is, I will be very happy to work with them.”
— Shant Shahrigian (@ShantRS) June 23, 2021
The concession marks the end of a campaign that had looked to tap into Yang’s name recognition from his presidential bid last year to propel him beyond other candidates with more experience in city politics.
Early polls had shown Yang receiving a flood of support, with observers and local media dubbing him the early frontrunner in the primary.
However, as the Democratic primary race dragged on and as a rise in crime became a central issue in the campaign, Yang ceded ground to other contenders. Strategists broadly attributed Yang’s polling decline to a decision from voters that someone with more government experience was needed to combat the crime wave as well as the coronavirus pandemic.
Yang sought to blunt his polling drop by adopting a more centrist tact than the one he took during his presidential bid, including casting himself as a supporter of law enforcement and saying there should be more police in the city’s subway. He also teamed up with former New York City Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia over the weekend to shore up his chances in the Democratic primary’s ranked-choice voting system.
Under the system, voters can rank their top five choices. Should no candidate win an outright majority, votes for subsequent picks are reallocated until one contender gets more than 50 percent of the vote, making it optimal for candidates to try to win support for themselves but also be the second choice for voters who prefer other contenders.
However, tallies showed Yang trailing Brooklyn Borough President and front-runner Eric Adams, Garcia and civil rights attorney Maya Wiley in the first round of voting. With more than 80 percent of the vote in, Yang came in fourth with just 11.7 percent, compared to just over 30 percent for Adams and around 21 percent for Wiley and Garcia.
The winner of the Democratic primary for New York City mayor will face Curtis Sliwa, the founder of the Guardian Angels, who won the Republican primary Tuesday.