The New York City Board of
Elections (BOE) on Tuesday
released preliminary results
from 11 rounds of ranked-choice voting
(RCV) in the mayoral race. The
problem is, those results only include
ballots from early voting and Election
Day and there are still more
than 100,000 absentee ballots left to
The BOE said it would conduct
the count again, in its entirety, after
all absentee ballots are counted. So,
why go through the initial round of
ranked-choice counting, if the early
results are going to be ignored for the
final results, which aren’t expected
before July 12?
Making matters worse, after releasing
the preliminary report, the
BOE said late Tuesday that there is a
“discrepancy” in the unofficial RCV
round-by-round elimination numbers.
The BOE said it is working to
address the issue and is asking the
public, elected officials and candidates
to “have patience.”
The BOE then pulled the results
from its website and released a statement
indicating that it accidentally
added about 135,000 votes to its preliminary
RCV calculations and
BRONX TIMES R 12 EPORTER, JULY 2-8, 2021 BTR
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promised an accurate preliminary
How can the BOE ask the public
to “have patience” when the agency
completely lacked patience of its own
regarding the primary election results.
The department should have
simply waited to count all ballots —
every single vote — before starting
the ranked-choice counts. Instead,
we have chaos, in what is perhaps the
city’s biggest election cycle in years.
The results of this election will determine
our next mayor, comptroller,
public advocate and dozens of City
Council members. And now, because
of the BOE’s failure to successfully
implement RCV on a citywide level,
how can we, the people, fully trust
the results of this election — never
mind the candidates?
The BOE should have practiced
what it preached and patiently waited
for all votes to be counted before releasing
the unofficial RCV round-byround
elimination numbers. There is
no value to creating the kind of chaos
that is now surrounding this election.
After the troubling events of the
2020 presidential election, which saw
a sitting president challenge the democratic
process due to fear of losing,
it is more important than ever to uphold
the integrity of elections in our
The BOE must fix the mistakes it
made, and must do it now.