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09.01.2015
The man who might be the next mayor of New York City is someone most people have never heard of. Less than two months ago, New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio was struggling to get to 20 percent among Democratic primary voters.
He even trailed the guy everyone did know: disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner, whose lingering sexting scandal seemed to take most of the air out of the other candidates.
Votes are still being counted, but 97 percent are in and de Blasio has 40.2 percent of the vote to the 26 percent of his nearest competitor, former New York City Comptroller Bill Thompson.
It may take a week or more to find out whether de Blasio will be able to hold on to the 40 percent he needs to avoid a runoff, but his performance has surprised observers if only because it effectively upended the race for the most powerful mayoral job in the country. Here's the trivia: He's a Massachusetts-bred Brooklynite who has boldly declared his love for the Boston Red Sox over the Yankees. He is married to an African American woman, Chirlane McCray, who tells people she was a lesbian in the 1970s. De Blasio served as Hillary Clinton's 2000 Senate campaign manager and on the New York City Council.


And he has a celebrity entourage that includes endorsements from the likes of Sex and the City actress Cynthia Nixon, civil rights activist and singer Harry Belafonte, and actress Susan Sarandon.
So in a campaign that featured Weiner's attempt to be the comeback kid, the title was taken instead by de Blasio.
He also highlighted his opposition to Mayor Michael Bloomberg, an Independent, which delighted Democratic voters after 12 years under his governance.
Exit polls from Tuesday night's primary found that Democratic voters wanted the next mayor to move away from Bloomberg's policies. De Blasio made his opposition to "stop and frisk" a central part of his campaign, and when a federal court ruled it violated constitutional rights in August he led the charge to denounce the policy and Bloomberg. He's promised to tax the rich to fund education, and has denounced Bloomberg's' business-driven governing philosophy. In what may have been a slip of the tongue in an interview with New York Magazine, Bloomberg called de Blasio's campaign "class-warfare and racist," only to clarify that he believed de Blasio used his bi-racial family in ads to appeal to black voters.
If de Blasio's narrow edge of 40 percent hold up, making him the Democratic nominee, he will try to become the first Democrat elected to the nation's largest city since 1989.


He would face the Republican candidate, former Metropolitan Transit Authority chairman and former deputy mayor to Rudy Giuliani, Joe Lhota in November. To close the deal with the general electorate -- composed of more than 800,000 people who are not affiliated with either the Democratic or Republican Party a€” he may have to moderate, Moss said. And as Weiner voters abandoned him, de Blasio was well positioned to bring them into his campaign's fold. And most say that the controversial "stop and frisk" policy, which Bloomberg championed as they key to reducing the city's crime, resulted in the harassment of innocent people.



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