London Breed Makes History as New SF Mayor

Elias Hubbard
June 14, 2018

Mark Leno by 2,177 votes with only about 6,700 left to count.

Turnout exceeded 50%, which is higher than usual for recent June gubernatorial primaries and mayoral elections.

The mayoral vote reflects San Francisco ranked-choice voting, in which voters mark their first, second and third choices.

Her lead has been increasing since Saturday.

As of Wednesday morning, Breed had pulled ahead of Leno with a 1,861-vote advantage.

She joins a small club of about 19 other black female U.S. mayors.

The ultimate triumph of Breed, who will be the first black woman to serve as San Francisco mayor, caps months of drama surrounding City Hall.

A 43-year-old San Francisco native, Breed was raised by her grandmother in local public housing, graduated from public schools, and worked her first job in public service as an intern in the Mayor's Office of Housing and Neighborhood Services. Ten girls looked upon her on as the future candidate filled out the paperwork required to run for San Francisco's mayor. "She's going to need all the help she can get".

Once the Department of Elections certifies the election, the Board of Supervisors will have to pass a resolution approving the results. The city's charter mandated that Breed take the city's top spot because she was the next in the line of succession as president of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.

Breed's campaign had no immediate comment, but she is expected to comment later.

Upon Lee's death, Breed - as president of the Board of Supervisors - became acting mayor.

She started her career in the city government as an intern before climbing its rungs. Breed will serve until 2020, finishing the term of the late Mayor Ed Lee, who died in December at age 65. "I'm proud to live in the largest city in America with a woman as mayor", she wrote.

In a victory speech on the steps of city hall, Breed challenged her supporters to strive for success.

"I want to offer my honest congratulations to Mayor-Elect London Breed on her election victory", he said in a prepared statement.

However, at his concession press conference, Leno rejected that characterization. And he thanked voters for exceeding low turnout expectations.

The victor was selected through the city's uncommon ranked-choice voting system, which is thought to save money on expensive runoff elections and elect the most broadly supported candidate.

"It is nearly impossible to imagine Leno getting enough votes from the remaining uncounted ballots", he said.

Kim also congratulated Breed in a Facebook post on Wednesday. "It may have taken away a strategic avenue of attack that Leno and Kim could have used if Breed had been the interim mayor". "So many people care about making sure that we're coming together to address these most challenging issues", Breed said. I can see Aaron Peskin trying again, but I can also see the supes looking for someone else - and Hillary Ronen would be the most likely candidate. "And I am prepared to make sure that I do everything that I can to work together, to bring the Board of Supervisors together, to bring everyone together for the goal of solving our most challenging problems".

"What's important is we focus on the work", she repeated.

Jane Kim would be an obvious contender, although she's termed out after this year.

The immediate politics are already starting: Who will Breed appoint to replace herself in D5?

Leno would have been the city's first openly gay mayor.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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