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He did better than many expected in his run last summer.Jumaane has been able to keep his name on the lips of voters since last June, which enabled him to be ahead of the other candidates when it was time to announce.What is unclear is what effect Amazon’s withdrawal and the pro-Ulrich independent expenditure will have on the race, if any.So far it has been a race to the left, but does Amazon change that in any way?But if I had to guess, I would have to say Jumaane Williams.
It’s not that most city residents were for HQ2, but if the anti-Amazon voters are split over 10 or 12 candidates, the voters who are disappointed that Amazon withdrew could go for Councilmember Eric Ulrich. If an outside independent expenditure group runs run-of-the-mill Republican ads as has been reported, that may actually drive up progressive turnout.It’s also worth noting that Rafael Espinal, who has been impressive talking policy on the campaign trail, has put significant resources into opening borough offices and knocking a lot of doors.Harry Giannoulis: In a low turnout election, the swing vote will be the millennial and formally lazy primary voters activated post Trump.I mentioned O’Donnell and the Upper West Side vote.Can Ulrich lure enough moderate Democrats, independents and Republicans to the polls for him? Whether any late-breaking endorsements come in could also make a difference, like if Blake’s old boss Barack Obama puts something out, or if The New York Times editorial board comes in strong for someone, or a large labor union or two decides to make a last-minute splash. It is so hard to predict who will actually vote in a citywide special election for an office most people have never heard of.