New Yorkers are going to the polls today to begin picking a new mayor, as well as other citywide office holders and City Council representatives. On the Lower East Side, there are several interesting races we’ll be watching.
First things first: the polls will stay open until 9 p.m. If you’re not sure where you’re supposed to vote, click here. You can also call 866-VOTE-NYC (212-868-3692).
The race we’ve been following most closely is the District 1 City Council campaign between incumbent Margaret Chin and challenger Jenifer Rajkumar. In District 2, which covers the East Side above Houston Street, City Council member Rosie Mendez is facing off against Rick Del Rio, a pastor and community activist. Since there’s no Republican competition to speak of, the general election is a formality and this evening’s result is what will determine our new local office holders.
State Senator Daniel Squadron, who represents Lower Manhattan and sections of Brooklyn, is a top contender for public advocate. He and Letitia James are expected to be battling it out tonight to be the top finisher (a runoff in a six candidate field is likely). If Squadron becomes public advocate, there will be an election to choose his successor in the Senate — so there are definitely local implications in this race.
And finally, the race for Manhattan Borough President includes a Lower Manhattan contender, former Community Board 1 chairperson Julie Menin. She has touted her downtown roots, arguing that people on the Lower East Side and other neighborhoods below 14th Street would benefit from having a borough president who understands their issues. Menin was campaigning Sunday at the corner of Clinton and Grand streets and made an appearance later in the day with Margaret Chin at Columbus Park. Menin’s biggest competition is City Council member Gale Brewer, who has the respect and support of many downtown activists. They see her as a strong public servant with years of experience navigating New York City politics.
We’ll have the results from all of the LES-centric races after the polls close tonight. If you see problems at your polling site, please let us know. You can send tips and photos to email@example.com.