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Bloomberg re-elected in close contest

The Brooklyn Paper
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If the mayoral election were determined by Brooklyn votes alone, William Thompson would be doing a victory dance as the mayor-elect.

According to unofficial tabulations, Thompson carried the borough with 51.8 percent of the Brooklyn electorate and 169,685 votes as compared to Bloomberg’s 48.2 percent or 157,651 votes.

Citywide, Bloomberg won in a nail biter receiving 51 percent or 556,775 votes to Thompson’s 46 percent or 506,501 votes, according to unofficial results.

In his victory speech, Bloomberg said voters have chosen progress over politics and chose keep the crime rate low and public schools getting better.

“The voters have spoken and now it’s up to us to deliver,” Bloomberg said.

Although Bloomberg won a third term in office, the billionaire mayor spent nearly $100 million in his re-election bid and had to overcome voter disenchantment after he legislated in a repeal of term limits that city voters twice approved in public referendums.

“Bloomberg overturned term limits and I didn’t like that,” said one borough voter outside the Municipal Building polling place in Downtown Brooklyn. “But Thompson didn’t make his talents or skills known so I had to vote on gut feeling and research I did myself.”

Another voter who said they voted for Thompson outside the same polling place said they did so because they believe in term limits.

“You’ve got to stir the soup,” she said.

Several other polling places reported low turnout, including the PS 179, at 202 Avenue C in Kensington, where a poll worker said they also believed Bloomberg’s overturning of term limits played a part on voter apathy.

But the election was a moment to savor for one recently naturalized American citizen, who requested anonymity and who was among the first to cast his vote at the PS 207 Annex Early Childhood Center, 3920 Flatlands Avenue.

“It was a tremendously fulfilling, exciting and wonderful experience to be part of a real democratic process, which treats voters like human beings and not objects to be strong-armed, invalidated or even disposed of, like in some other countries,” he said, adding it was his first time ever voting in his new country.

Locally, Bloomberg was trounced in such neighborhoods as Prospect Heights and Fort Greene, and won narrowly in such neighborhoods as Kensington, Red Hook and Cobble Hill.

In the 45th Assembly District representing Sheepshead Bay and Plumb Beach, Bloomberg won by his largest margin citywide with 12,894 votes to Thompson’s 2,573 votes.

Mike Geller, the 45th Assembly Democratic District Leader attributed the landslide to hard work at getting the vote out.

“I wasn’t surprised at the closeness of the race,” said Geller. “I couldn’t understand the polls having him (Bloomberg) up 12-18 points. People were very upset about the term limits (extension) and we had to work very hard to overcome that.”

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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