Christine Quinn’s quest to become New York City’s first female and first lesbian mayor faces its toughest test tomorrow: the voters. The city’s primary will either give Quinn another shot at securing the Democratic nomination for mayor (and pretty much clinching the job) or leave her supporters wondering how she went from sure-thing to also-ran.
All signs are that it will be a close call. Bill de Blasio, the city’s public advocate, has experienced a surge in the polls and according to the last set released is very close to securing 40% of the vote. That’s a magic number: if he reaches 40%, he’s the nominee. Below 40%, and he will face a run-off in three weeks with his closest opponent.
As for Quinn, she’s duking it out with Bill Thompson, the former city comptroller, for second place. In the three polls just released, Thompson is ahead in two by a comfortable margin.
Quinn has run a good campaign, but her closeness with the departing mayor, Michael Bloomberg, seems to be hurting her with voters who are suffering from Bloomberg fatigue. One sign that things aren’t looking great for Quinn: de Blasio ventured into Quinn’s city council district last week, where he was greeted with a warm welcome. Considering that Quinn represents heavily gay Chelsea, that can’t be good news.
However, Quinn insists, “I’m a fighter. You don’t end up being the first woman and first openly LGBT speaker of the City Council unless you’re a fighter.” The question is, is being a fighter enough to make her mayor?