People vote during primary election day at PS 249 The Caton School on June 22, 2021 in the Flatbush neighborhood of Brooklyn in New York City.

Michael M. Santiago | Getty Images

So New York City didn’t want to make its first foray into the ranking selection.

After preliminary statements by the NYC electoral board on Tuesday showed that Eric Adams crossed the 50 percent threshold for the Democratic mayoral candidate in Round 11 of the election, there were more questions than answers by the end of the night.

Adams quickly reacted with skepticism about the originally published earnings figures. He questioned the total number of votes the BOE had compared to what was announced on primary night.

“The number of votes just published by the electoral board is over 100,000 more than the total announced on election night, which raises serious questions. We asked the electoral board to explain this massive surge and other irregularities before commenting on the ranking of the Choice Voting projection, “Adams said in a statement, adding that the campaign” is confident that Eric Adams will be the next New York Mayor will be”.

The BOE said in a tweet that it was aware of “a discrepancy in the unofficial RCV round-by-round elimination report” and asked “the public, elected officials and candidates for patience”.

About two hours after that announcement, the BOE posted the results on its website, which instead stated that the unofficial results would come on Wednesday. The site later only produced an error message.

Later that evening, the electoral board released a statement clarifying where the discrepancy in the numbers came from, saying that election night results were incorrectly combined with test results made before the day of the primary. The test votes had not been cleared from the system until the BOE ran the first round of ranked voting results, the BOE said, which meant an additional 135,000 test votes were counted as real.

“The board of directors has removed all test voice images from the system and will upload the election night results and compare them with the election night reporting software for review. The data record of the votes cast will be regenerated and the RV rounds will be tabulated again, ”said the BOE and apologized for the mix-up.

Before the results were recorded, they showed Adams Edge, former Hygiene Supervisor Kathryn Garcia, with just under 16,000 votes (Adams received 51.1% of the vote versus Garcia’s 48.9%) in the calculations, which were never official or final.

When the vote ended on June 22, Adams, a former police officer, had a lead of around 75,000 votes over civil rights attorney Maya Wiley, with Garcia just behind in third place. Former presidential candidate Andrew Yang admitted after the first results were published.

However, these vote counts were very incomplete. They only included a glimpse of who voters identified as their first choice for the job. New York now allows voters to rank five candidates in order of preference.

The voting table is done in rounds. The last-placed candidate is eliminated in each round. The votes cast that rank first for this candidate will then be redistributed to the second election of these voters.

This process repeats itself until there are only two candidates left and the one with the most votes wins. Under that system, it would still be possible for Wiley or Garcia to overtake Adams if more voters name them as their second, third, fourth, or even fifth choice in the race.

In the unofficial ranking polls originally released on Tuesday afternoon, the percentage difference between Adams, Wiley and Garcia stayed roughly the same until round nine, when candidates Dianne Morales, Shaun Donovan and Scott Stinger were eliminated.

In turn 10, Andrew Yang is eliminated. After the votes for him are redistributed among the three remaining candidates, Garcia receives a sizeable boost – not surprising considering the candidates fought together on the last weekend before primary day. But while Garcia was able to take a slight lead over Wiley at this point, Adams was still about 11 points clear.

After falling to third place, Wiley is eliminated on lap 11 and Garcia sees her biggest climb. Adams got just over 44,000 more votes in this final round, but Garcia wins nearly 117,000 – which means much better support among Wiley voters than Adams had.

Signs outside a Manhattan polling station as voters vote for the Democratic primary for mayors and other elected positions in New York City on June 22, 2021.

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

But anything that comes before the postal votes have been counted – a crucial caveat that could ultimately determine the winner. Even before the “discrepancy,” there was always the possibility that the unofficial results, which were due to be released on Tuesday, could have changed significantly in the coming weeks, with tens of thousands of those postal votes being counted.

More than 125,000 Democrats have voted in the area code by postal vote, based on ballot papers received by Tuesday. The district with the highest number of absentee votes was Manhattan, with more than 40,000. Queens and Brooklyn were not far behind at 37,000 and 33,000, respectively.

None of these ballot papers were included in the ranking selection analysis in the city’s first round. Election officials plan to conduct another round of rankings analysis on July 6th, which will include postal voting.

In a statement following the release of the unofficial and incomplete results, the Garcia campaign said it was “confident of a path to victory,” but also called for patience while waiting for the full results.

“As soon as all the votes are counted, I know that everyone will support the democratic candidate, and that is exactly what I intend to do. We look forward to the final results. It is worth waiting for democracy,” Garcia said in a statement.

Wiley echoed that sentiment, saying that “we must allow the democratic process to continue and every vote counts for New Yorkers to believe in our democracy and government. And we must all support its results.”

The Democratic Grand Prize winner becomes the prohibitive favorite in the general election against Curtis Sliwa, Republican founder of the Guardian Angels.

Either Adams or Wiley would be the second black mayor of New York City, and either Garcia or Wiley would be the first woman mayor.

Adams, 60, is a moderate Democrat who turned against the Defund the Police movement, saying that under his leadership the city could find a way to fight crime while fighting a legacy of racial injustice in the police force .

He was previously a state senator before becoming Brooklyn’s borough president, a job where he has no legislative power but does some constituent services and discretionary city expenses.

Wiley, 57, served as an attorney for Mayor Bill de Blasio and previously headed a civil panel investigating complaints of police misconduct.

As a former legal analyst for MSNBC, she ran as a progressive cutting $ 1 billion from the police budget and redirecting it to other city officials.

Garcia, 51, is a city government veteran who served as a non-ideological crisis manager well suited to bringing New York out of a century of pandemic.

Garcia headed the hygiene department from 2014 until he left last September to consider a candidacy for mayor’s office. De Blasio also hired Garcia to run a food distribution emergency program during the coronavirus pandemic, having previously appointed her interim chairman of the city’s contested social housing system.

Previously, she was Chief Operating Officer of the city’s environmental protection agency, responsible for water and sewage systems.