Tuesday, September 17, 2013

NYC general election matchups set

I began Election news from campuses on the campaign trail with a program note.
I'm waiting for the results of two recounts, Detroit's and New York City's, to be announced.  Detroit's recount will not change the candidates on the general election ballot; it's another stunt by Tom Barrow, hopefully his last as a politician.  On the other hand, New York City's will have real consequences.  If Bill DeBlasio gets above 40% in the recount, he goes on to the general election.  If not, he faces a run-off.  The outcome should be announced this week and I promise to get back to you all with it.
I didn't have to wait for the recount for the outcome.  This morning, runner-up Bill Thompson conceded.
HE'S OUT: Nearly a week after de Blasio received more than 40% of the Democratic primary vote, Bill Thompson stepped aside. 'Today I am proud to stand next to a great New Yorker and throw my full support behind him.'
As for why, the New York Daily News explained that Bill Thompson concedes mayoral race for the Democratic good.
Bill Thompson, in his concession to Bill de Blasio, gave the Democratic Party the unity it needed with the hopes of taking back City Hall after 20 years of Republican reign.
Unofficial tallies showed de Blasio with 40.3% of the vote, far ahead of Thompson’s 26% and enough to avoid a runoff.

Even if a recount pushed de Blasio below the magic 40%, Thompson’s strategists saw their guy’s chances of winning a runoff a long shot. Only Republican candidate Joe Lhota, they figured, would benefit from several more weeks of Democratic division.
So the NYC Mayor's contest is set.  So is the Comptroller's, as Eliot Spitzer Loses To Scott Stringer In NYC Comptroller Race.
In a stunning rebuke, former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer lost his bid to become the Democratic nominee for city comptroller.

Poll results Tuesday night showed Spitzer losing to Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer. With 93 percent of precincts reporting, Stringer beat Spitzer by 3.5 percent.

The Democratic nominee is virtually assured of winning the general election in early November and becoming the city's chief financial officer.
So much for Spitzer and Weiner staging comebacks in New York.

I concluded Election news from campuses on the campaign trail by mentioning Sam Wang.
With Nate going to ESPN, Wang and Sabato may be the leaders in forecasting the next election cycle.
It turned out that Wang weighed in on both the Mayor's and Comptroller's contests.
In today’s New York City Democratic primary, front-runner (and progressive) Bill DeBlasio has drawn 41.9+/-1.3% of decided voters (n=5 polls since late August). The threshold for avoiding a runoff is 40%, and if (and that’s an if!) polls are any indication, he will reach this threshold with a 90% probability. Note that primaries are harder than usual to predict since voters can be volatile.
In the other high-visibility primary, for comptroller, Manhattan borough president Scott Stringer has largely closed the gap with former governor Eliot Spitzer. However, Spitzer still leads by 2.0 +/- 1.7% (n=3 September polls). That puts Spitzer’s win probability at 80%, in knife-edge territory.
Wang ended up being 1 for 2.
Aftermath:... DeBlasio currently has 40.3%, so a mayoral runoff appears to be avoided, as I predicted. Stringer wins comptroller – I was on the wrong side of that. However, as I’ve said before, with my methods, anything in the 20-80% probability range is a knife-edge situation. The comptroller race was such an example.
Keep up the good work Sam, and always learn from your mistakes.

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