President Barack Obama has a pre-election ritual where he plays a friendly game of basketball as the votes are cast. Today was no exception and the president hit the court this afternoon as voters across the country cast their ballots in what he has referred to as “my last election.”
According to tweets from Alexi Giannoulias, a longtime friend of Mr. Obama’s and a former Illinois State Treasurer, Mr. Giannoulias and Chicago Bulls great Scottie Pippen joined the president’s team to face off against former Obama body man Reggie Love and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.
A number of other candidates have won tough races tonight. As the results come trickling in, here are some notable ones:
Assemblyman William Boyland Jr., currently facing federal charges that he solicited bribes to pay his legal bills in an unrelated federal corruption case, won against a slew of challengers. Six opponents split the anti-Boyland vote, allowing him to skate by with a weak plurality.
State Senator Shirley Huntley, indicted a couple weeks ago on charges that she helped deliver member items to a sham non-profit, lost to Councilman James Sanders, who waged an aggressive campaign and managed to turn out his base in a seat made less favorable to Ms. Huntley in redistricting.
State Senator Adriano Espaillat declared victory against his challenger Guillermo Linares tonight, fending off spirited campaign that a reignited rivalries both old and new. The officially reported numbers currently have Mr. Espaillat ahead by a 2-1 margin with many outstanding precincts, indicating that his internal numbers are likely accurate as to who the ultimate victor will be.
cue the sad trombone
State Senator Adriano Espaillat conceded his race against Congressman Charlie Rangel for a second time yesterday, and it seems he’s not planning to issue the apology to the Board of Elections that Commissioner J.C. Polanco called for anytime soon. Mr. Polanco felt his criticism against the board was unwarranted, but Mr. Espaillat made it pretty clear on Inside City Hall last night that he won’t be backing down.
“No apology,” he stated. “The day after the election we got an unofficial report that showed over 70 EDs … at zero. I could see three or four, that’s within the margin of error. But over 70 electoral districts showing up at zero? Totally unacceptable for New Yorkers!”
“I’m here to acknowledge that we came short two percent, I want to congratulate Congressman Charles B. Rangel for his victory and tell him that I look forward to working with him as we move forward,” State Senator Adriano Espaillat announced at a sunny press conference in Inwood this afternoon.
“Back in 1996 when I first got into politics, I defeated a 16-year incumbent and I ran against the political establishment,” he continued. “I did so again this year, everyone from Nancy Pelosi on down supported the incumbent, so I’m very proud to have run a very strong race.”
Welcome to the Florida of Upper Manhattan and the Bronx.
State Senator Adriano Espaillat, who had originally conceded the race against Congressman Charlie Rangel last Tuesday, clearly isn’t ready to go there just yet. At a packed press conference held in front of a senior center on 187th Street, Mr. Espaillat slammed the Board of Elections, lobbed allegations of voter suppression, and explained his plans going forward.
“Mayor Bloomberg said a couple days ago that this electoral process is easily corruptible, that, in fact, the Board of Elections is a board that the average New Yorker cannot trust,” Mr. Espaillat declared. “I agree with him.”
More ballots were opened for the March 20th State Senate special election this afternoon, and Republican candidate David Storobin doubled his margin … to two votes, multiple tipsters told The Politicker.
The latest gain comes from absentee and provisional ballots where the respective campaigns withdrew their objections. 41 ballots were counted in total, with 21 going to Mr. Storobin and 20 going to his Democratic opponent, Lew Fidler.
The latest turn in the special election to replace Carl Kruger in the State Senate has given the Republican candidate, David Storobin, a gigantic lead of one vote over his Democratic opponent Lew Fidler, multiple tipsters told The Politicker.
Contrary to what both of the campaigns had reported, the final result last night was actually a tie, a symbolic number in what has been a grueling race.
And, with all of the invalid absentee and provisional ballots finished being reviewed and contested today, Mr. Storobin’s lead has hopped up to that single point.
With Democrat Lew Fidler taking a three-vote lead yesterday (or possibly no lead at all) after the uncontested absentee and provisional ballots were counted in the special election to replace corrupt former State Senator Carl Kruger, things appear very tight indeed.
Both campaigns sent out statements, which you can view below, and both are expressing confidence while accusing the other of ethnic discrimination in their ballot challenges.
a very special election
As the first day of counting absentee votes in last week’s special election to replace corrupt former State Senator Carl Kruger came to a close this evening, Republican candidate David Storobin led Democratic Lew Fidler by just 37 votes, a source familiar with the situation told The Politicker.
When the process convened for a lunch break earlier this afternoon, Mr. Storobin’s lead had dropped from his Election Day total of 119 to 62.
Only 296 votes have been counted, about half of the 757 valid absentee votes when one takes into account that some valid votes were contested and placed aside for the moment. Additionally, hundreds more ballots initially ruled to be invalid are out there for both campaigns to contest, some of which are likely to be brought back into play.