Wednesday, 13 June 2018

London Breed likely to be San Francisco new mayor, becomes first black woman mayor of San Francisco

London Breed likely to be San Francisco new mayor, becomes first black woman mayor of San Francisco

London Breed is likely to become the first African-American woman elected to lead San Francisco following a hard-fought campaign when a former state senator conceded and congratulated her Wednesday, more than a week after the election.

Breed, president of the Board of Supervisors, was leading Leno by fewer than 1,900 votes Tuesday with about 245,000 ballots tallied and at least 9,000 ballots left to count. Her lead has been increasing since Saturday.

Exuberant and excited, she appeared before supporters and reporters on the steps of City Hall to say she was humbled, honored and looking forward to being the city's next mayor.

She said she was thrilled at the message her election sends to San Francisco's youth, especially impoverished kids growing up like she did.

"No matter where you come from, no matter what you decide to do in life, you can do anything you want to do," she said. "Never let your circumstances determine your outcome in life."

The elections office was set to release an updated tally at 4 p.m. Wednesday, and as of Tuesday, the department had counted 244,398 ballots or 50.71 percent of the registered voters. Among first-choice votes, Breed leads at 36.56 percent of the votes, or 88,257, which is 11.9 percentage points higher than Leno.

Earlier in the day, Mark Leno told reporters crammed into the tiny print shop that he had a positive conversation and that Breed was gracious.

"She is a remarkable young woman and she is going to do a very fine job. Her success is San Francisco's success," he said.

There are 9,390 ballots left to count. Department of Elections Director John Arntz said he expects to count nearly all ballots by Friday.

“It’s done, I think,” said David Letterman, principal at the political consulting firm Brick Circle Advisor. He said for Leno to prevail he would need to see the remaining votes swing his way by some “astronomical percentage.”

Leno is scheduled to address the media on Thursday, according to Leno’s campaign spokesperson ZoĆ« Kleinfeld. He is currently out of town and will return late Wednesday. “We are waiting to honor the votes of each and every person who turned out in this election,” Kleinfeld said. She added that it’s an “incredibly close race.”

Tara Moriarty, Breed’s campaign spokesperson, said that they are not declaring victory at this time.

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