2021 Mayoral Election: The Candidates and What to Know

Next Mayor Likely to Emerge from Large Field of Democratic Candidates

Although the impact of the ongoing pandemic continues to dominate New York City headlines, the Primary Elections for the next Mayor of New York City is quietly approaching.

In June, the Democratic Primary will be held and although there will certainly be a Republican candidate for Mayor, the winner of the Democratic Primary is likely to be the frontrunner to succeed Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The following is a list of the Democratic candidates likely to be on the ballot on Primary Election Day on June 22nd:

Eric Adams: Current Brooklyn Borough President, former New York State Senator, and retired NYPD Captain. Adams is considered one of the more moderate candidates in the field.

Scott Stringer: Current New York City Comptroller and former Manhattan Borough President, considered to be a very progressive and pro-tenant candidate.
Shaun Donovan: Former United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under former President Barack Obama. Donovan was also Commissioner of the City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) under former Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Considered a moderate candidate.

Andrew Yang: Former 2020 Presidential candidate and entrepreneur and one of the most progressive candidates in the field.
Ray McGuire: Former Citigroup executive and considered to be a progressive candidate.

Carlos Menchaca: City Council Member of Brooklyn’s 38th Council District and a well-known progressive, pro-tenant candidate.
Loree Sutton: Former Commissioner of the City Department of Veterans’ Services (DVS) and retired United States Army General. Considered to be a moderate candidate.

Dianne Morales: A former CEO of a social services non-profit that is considered to be a very progressive candidate with an extreme pro-tenant platform.
Kathryn Garcia: Former Commissioner of the City Department of Sanitation (DSNY) and former Chief Operating Officer of the City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). A moderate candidate compared to the rest of the field.

Maya Wiley: A professor at The New School and former chairperson of the City Civilian Complaint Review Board. Considered to be a very progressive candidate with a very pro-tenant platform.

WNYC radio host Brian Lehrer has interviewed each candidate and discusses various topics with each one, including real estate, rent, and housing. The following link will bring you to the search engine on WNYC’s website. Simply type “Meet the Candidate” and any of the above-mentioned candidate’s names and it will bring up their individual radio interview.

Additionally, over the next few months, debates between the candidates will be scheduled and will give RSA members a better idea of each candidate’s platform. In the meantime, it is crucial that you familiarize yourself with each candidate. We have seen how hurtful a pro-tenant, progressive mayor can be for our industry and the City over the last seven years with Mayor de Blasio. It is important to vote for a candidate that will maintain a balance between the needs of rental property owners and tenants.

Also, it is important to keep in mind that a new voting system has been established for this year’s citywide elections. In the February issue of the RSA Reporter, we discussed Ranked Choice Voting. This new system of voting allows voters to rank their top five candidates in primary and special elections for Mayor, Comptroller, Borough President, and City Council races. On their ballots, voters can rank up to five candidates in order of preference. If no candidate receives more than 50% of votes, there is an automatic runoff using the ranked choices. Voters can still choose to only vote for one candidate if they would like.

We will keep you apprised of all upcoming developments with regard to the 2021 Mayoral Election. Furthermore, in next month’s issue, we will discuss the importance of the upcoming City Council races. Many candidates will have primary races this June and an astounding 36 out of 51 City Council seats are term-limited this year.