De Blasio mayoral win in NYC carries radical implications


New York, NEW YORK—Democrat Bill de Blasio was elected New York City Mayor Tuesday, Nov. 7 in a landslide victory, beating his Republican rival Joe Lhota by nearly 50 percentage points. Lhota conceded about half an hour after the polls closed at 9:00 p.m., New York Daily News reported.

In his victory speech, de Blasio thanked his supporters and said, “the challenges we face have been decades in the making, and the problems we set out to address will not be solved overnight. But make no mistake: the people of this city have chosen a progressive path.”

Lhota thanked his supporters for their efforts in his concession speech and said that “it is natural tonight to feel some disappointment, but tomorrow, we must move beyond it.  It was a good fight and it was a fight worth having.”

Lhota also expressed his hopes for the future of the city, saying that as we move forward, we must retain the “achievements” of the past decades, which include a historically low crime rate and an expanding economy and job market.  He also made one more apparent response to de Blasio’s “tale of two cities” philosophy. “We are five boroughs, but we are one city, we are one people, and we want our city to move forward, not backwards,” Lhota said. “And I do hope our mayor-elect understands this before it’s too late.”

Photo by AP images.

The New York Times reported that some of Lhota’s supporters have cited insufficient funding and a failure to “make a convincing case for himself” as reasons for his loss.  The de Blasio campaign’s get-out-the-vote efforts were also more expansive than Lhota’s on election day.

According to New York Daily News, de Blasio’s campaign tactics proved more successful.  In a city where “Nearly seven out of 10 voters said the city needed to move in a new direction from Bloomberg’s policies,” NYDN said de Blasio set a foundation for himself as “the anti-Bloomberg.” Lhota tried unsuccessfully to achieve the same label.  De Blasio also showed off his biracial family in campaign ads, which resonated with a diverse city.

De Blasio’s goals include changing the NYPD stop-and-frisk policy and raising taxes on the rich in order to fund universal pre-kindergarten.  Lhota is concerned with de Blasio’s stance on stop-and-frisk, as he believes it will result in higher crime rates, CBS New York reported.

De Blasio’s campaign website also states that he will pursue further regulations of crisis pregnancy centers.

The Washington Post predicted that the new mayor's administration will serve as "a laboratory of sorts for modern progressivism.”

Some King’s students are not confident about how the de Blasio administration might affect them in the future.  Joseph Holmes (’16) said, “I would love to spend the rest of my life here if I can. But the thing that makes that even mildly possible was New York's great law enforcement and it's okay treatment of entrepreneurs. De Blasio seems like he's going to take those away."

Charlie Durham (’14) says de Blasio’s election reminds him of President Obama’s election because “New Yorkers were getting tired of Bloomberg and wanted something radically new.  De Blasio fits this description.”  Durham expressed his concern over de Blasio’s education policies, saying that de Blasio “is not a fan of charter schools, and they need all of the help they can get, especially against the behemoth teacher's unions.”

De Blasio will officially be sworn in as mayor on Jan. 1, 2014.