New York Democrats fail to choose first openly gay and first female mayoral nominee

PinkNews logo with white background and rainbow corners

The openly gay New York City mayoral hopeful Christine Quinn, on Tuesday evening conceded in the primary election, placing third behind her two opponents.

Quinn, who placed as favourite in early polls, gave a passionate speech congratulating her opponents Bill Thompson and Bill de Blasio. The latter stormed the ballots, with early counts seeing him reach marginally over the 40% required for a run-off. Thompson gained 26% of the vote.

“I want to congratulate my opponents Bill Thompson and Bill de Blasio on a hard-earned victory” Quinn said, speaking at the Dream Hotel in Chelsea.

“This was a hard-fought race, we took a lot of knocks, we were up against a lot off odds, but I am proud of the race we all ran,” she continued. “There’s a young girl out there who was inspired by the thought of New York’s first woman mayor and said to herself, ‘You know what? I can do that.’”

Prior to conceding the vote, Quinn was standing on the corner of West 97th Street and Columbus Avenue when 12-year-old Victoria Bennett approached the speaker on her walk hom from school.

“Wait–is that Christine Quinn?!” she shouted, stopping.She burst into tears as the speaker gave her an embrace. “Oh my God!”

As City Council speaker, Quinn was New York City’s second most powerful public servant, behind the mayor.

Quinn married her wife Kim Catullo, in New York City last May. In her memoir, Quinn wrote that Catullo said she could only be with a New York Yankees fan. ”I dumped the [New York] Mets in a hot second,” Quinn said.

Catullo last month said she was worried about Quinn’s safety because of homophobic threats she had received, but did not specify anything other than they were received because she is open about her sexuality.

On the back of this result, New York is yet to elect either a female, or an openly gay person for its mayor.

Should the final tally for de Blasio fail to reach over 40%, he will face a run-off election in October against Thompson. Reports suggest that a recount will take place to ensure that de Blasio did get over 40%.