Democrat Refuses To Bow Out Of Mayoral Race Until All Ballots Counted

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Bill Thompson’s campaign for mayor might be entering its final hours, but he’s holding out hope that he’ll still be in the race after all ballots are counted this week.

The former city comptroller finished second in Tuesday’s Democratic primary. If front-runner, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, receives 40 percent of the vote, he would avoid an Oct. 1 runoff against Thompson.

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Some have urged Thompson, who has 26 percent of the votes counted so far, to bow out. But Thompson has vowed to remain in the race.

He said the full counting of votes “is about democracy.”

“Every ballot should be counted, and every voice should be heard,” Thompson told WCBS 880’s Monica Miller on Sunday before the African-American Day Parade in Harlem. “There are a lot of people who are saying that also.”

While at least five state Assembly members and three city councilmen have jumped ship from Thompson and joined de Blasio’s camp, Thompson said most of his supporters remain firmly in his corner.

The city’s Board of Elections was spending the weekend recanvassing the 640,000 votes cast Tuesday. On Monday, officials will count about 78,000 special, absentee and affidavit ballots that may not have been tallied on primary night. The outstanding ballots make up more than 11 percent of votes cast.

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De Blasio said Sunday that he had no problem with Thompson waiting for the final tally.

“As I’ve said repeateadly, he has every right to call for a full count,” he told WCBS 880’s Jim Smith. “I respect that. I respect Bill. I’ve worked with him for many years.”

He, however, said that he expects to still be above the 40-percent threshold after the last vote has been counted. De Blasio added that the wait is not taking a toll on him.

“Do I look nerve-racked?” he said with a laugh.

The Democratic nominee will face Republican Joe Lhota, a former deputy mayor under Rudy Giuliani who was the MTA’s chairman from 2011-12, in the Nov. 5 general election.

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