What Kind Of Mayor Might Eric Adams Be? No One Seems To Know.

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  • Topline

    Democrat Eric Adams, who emerged victorious from a crowded Democratic primary field this summer on a moderate safety-based platform, will become the next mayor of New York City after handily defeating Republican challenger Curtis Sliwa in Tuesday’s election, per the Associated Press.

    Eric Adams will be New York City's second Black mayor. (Eduardo Munoz/Pool Photo via AP, File)


    Key Facts

    A former New York City Police Department captain and current Brooklyn borough president, Adams will be the city’s second Black mayor.

    Adams had secured 75.2% of the vote compared to Sliwa’s 20.3% as of 9:20 p.m. with about 17% of the vote counted.

    Local polls closed at 9 p.m., and the AP called the race in Adams’ favor shortly after at 9:10 p.m.

    Adams captured two-thirds or more of the vote in Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan and Queens, while Sliwa carried Staten Island with 54.4% of votes.

    Key Background

    Adams’ victory comes as no surprise, as recent polls suggested he held a 40 percentage point lead over Sliwa, the conservative founder of the Guardian Angels crime prevention organization. The mayor-elect faced stiff competition during the Democratic primary, narrowly beating out former NYC Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia, progressive Maya Wiley and former presidential candidate Andrew Yang. Adams’ blue collar and law enforcement background resonated with city residents, and his centrist campaign focused on violence prevention and police reform. 

    Crucial Quote

    Asked by the New York Times this summer his top priority if elected mayor, Adams said: “Safety, safety, safety.”


    Where Adams actually lives became a mini-controversy beginning in June. Adams maintained he had lived for almost 10 years in the ground floor apartment of a row house he owns in Brooklyn while only occasionally staying in a co-op in  Fort Lee, New Jersey, that he bought with his partner. Critics are skeptical of this explanation, as personal tax filings revealed he reported living “zero days” in his Brooklyn property. He also claimed to be living at Brooklyn Borough Hall in March 2020 following the onset of the Covid pandemic. Adams would likely settle the debate should he move into the Gracie Mansion mayoral residence in Manhattan in 2022.

    Surprising Fact

    New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio does not want to leave Empire State politics any time soon: He filed paperwork Tuesday to run in the 2022 New York gubernatorial race. De Blasio has been mayor since 2014 but can’t run again due to term limits.

    Further Reading

    Adams Said He Will Collaborate With Gang Members As NYC Mayor—Latest In A List Of Divisive Public Safety Policies (Forbes)

    Eric Adams sets sights on governing as general election nears (Politico)

    Eric Adams Wins Democratic Primary for New York City Mayor (New York Times)

    What Kind of Mayor Might Eric Adams Be? No One Seems to Know. (New York Times)

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