More stories

  • in

    Scott Stringer Explores Run Against Eric Adams for N.Y.C. Mayor

    Mr. Stringer, whose 2021 mayoralty bid was derailed by a sexual misconduct allegation, is gearing up to try again to beat Eric Adams.Scott M. Stringer, the former New York City comptroller and 2021 mayoral candidate, said on Thursday that he would form an exploratory committee and begin raising funds for a possible primary challenge against Mayor Eric Adams next year.The move caught much of the city’s Democratic establishment by surprise and signaled the start of a combative new phase of Mr. Adams’s mayoralty, as Mr. Stringer became the first Democrat to move toward directly contesting the mayor’s re-election.Any primary challenge promises to be exceedingly difficult. No challenger has defeated an incumbent New York City mayor in a primary since David Dinkins beat Edward I. Koch in 1989.But few of his predecessors have been held in such low regard in polls as Mr. Adams, who is confronting the city’s budget woes, an escalating migrant crisis and an F.B.I. investigation into his campaign. Other challengers may soon follow.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber?  More

  • in

    Scott Stringer Sues for Defamation Over Sexual Assault Claim

    Mr. Stringer, the former New York City comptroller, said that a woman’s claims of sexual assault were lies and caused “irreparable harm” as he ran for mayor.Nearly 20 months after allegations of unwanted sexual advances derailed his campaign for New York City mayor, Scott M. Stringer sued one of his accusers for defamation on Monday, arguing that she smeared his reputation with falsehoods and misrepresentations.In a lawsuit filed in State Supreme Court in Manhattan, Mr. Stringer said that the woman, Jean Kim, had done “irreparable harm to him and his political future” by portraying what he called an “on-and-off” consensual relationship as predatory. He demanded that Ms. Kim retract her accusations and pay damages.“These defamatory statements have caused Mr. Stringer emotional pain and suffering, as well as injury to his reputation, honor and dignity,” lawyers for Mr. Stinger, a longtime Democratic politician and former New York City comptroller, wrote in the 12-page complaint.The legal action appears to be a calculated risk for Mr. Stringer, 62. If successful, it could help clear up his public image as he contemplates a political comeback. But it also serves to resurface Ms. Kim’s decades-old claims of misconduct, while posing the risk of an embarrassing legal defeat and reopening scrutiny into an earlier chapter in his life.Defamation cases are notoriously hard to prove, especially for public figures. To even get his case heard in court, Mr. Stringer must get around New York’s statute of limitations for defamation, and his lawyers are relying on a relatively novel legal theory to do so.They wrote in the suit that the matter was reopened legally in August 2022, when they assert — with scant detail — that Ms. Kim caused Representative Carolyn Maloney to resurface her defamatory statement against Mr. Stringer.The factual and legal issues are particularly relevant at a moment when New York and the country are still grappling with balancing the claims of women propelled by the #MeToo movement against the right to due process, and appraising what should happen to public figures like Mr. Stringer who are accused of misconduct decades after the fact.Ms. Kim and a lawyer who had represented her during the mayoral campaign did not comment on Monday morning, after the suit was filed.In an interview on Friday, Mr. Stringer said that he decided to take legal action now, after a needed “cooling-off period” for his family, to salvage his reputation. He acknowledged that waiting so long after the initial statements may have constrained his options legally.“There are times you could just walk away,” Mr. Stringer said. “But it was a lie. It was just a total lie. And I can’t live with myself if I did not do everything in my power to expose it.”Ms. Kim came forward in April 2021, in the heat of the Democratic primary for mayor. At the time, Mr. Stringer, a liberal who had slowly risen through the ranks of city politics, was considered a top-tier candidate for the nomination, though he seldom led early public polls.In a news conference and media interviews, Ms. Kim said that Mr. Stringer sexually assaulted her in 2001 when she was working as an unpaid intern on his unsuccessful campaign for public advocate. She said Mr. Stringer, then a state assemblyman whom she viewed as an older mentor figure, repeatedly groped her without consent, put his hands down the back of her pants, pressured her to have sex — and then warned her not to tell anyone.“He constantly reminded me of his power by saying things like, ‘You want me to make a phone call for you to change your life,’ ‘You want me to make you the first Asian district leader,’” Ms. Kim later told The New York Times. Many prominent supporters quickly backed away from his campaign. Mr. Stringer stayed in the race, but ultimately finished fifth in a primary election won by Eric Adams, who went on to become mayor.Mr. Stringer disputed Ms. Kim’s account, saying they were peers and that their relationship had been consensual and public within the tight circles of Upper West Side Democratic politics. His campaign also presented documents that showed that Ms. Kim, who has worked as a political lobbyist, might have helped one of Mr. Stringer’s rivals, Andrew Yang, which she disputed.Monday’s lawsuit largely repeats the conflicting stories without new evidence, and seeks to highlight factual errors or inconsistencies in Ms. Kim’s claims.It remains unclear if Ms. Kim’s version of events can be independently corroborated; she has not provided any records, nor has she mentioned associates with whom she discussed the allegations at the time.Defamation, particularly cases involving public figures like Mr. Stringer, can be difficult to prove, and the contradictory claims by Ms. Kim and Mr. Stringer — involving shifting sexual and romantic mores, political power and few hard pieces of evidence — only add to that burden.Mr. Stringer appears to have even more pressing legal burdens, with Ms. Kim likely to argue for dismissal because her original statements fall outside New York’s statute of limitations.His argument that the timeline was restarted in August rests on photos on social media that apparently show Ms. Kim at a campaign event with Ms. Maloney, who was running in a primary contest against Representative Jerrold Nadler, a longtime mentor of Mr. Stringer’s.Two weeks later, the congresswoman attacked Mr. Nadler in The New York Post for supporting “a man accused of sexual assault.” The lawsuit argues that it should have been “reasonably foreseeable” for Ms. Kim that Ms. Maloney would “republish” her claims after their meeting.Some allies of Mr. Stringer, left, believe he should be considered a potential heir to his mentor, Representative Jerrold Nadler, right, if he decides to retire.Hiroko Masuike/The New York TimesLegal experts briefed on the issues raised by the case, though, said that the application of the theory known as “republication” would be ripe for challenge on multiple grounds. Though the suit insinuates that Ms. Kim somehow prompted Ms. Maloney’s statement, Mr. Stringer’s lawyers never actually state what, if anything, she told the congresswoman to encourage or direct her to reference Mr. Stringer. “If there’s no clear evidence that the defendant directed the third party to make the statement, it’s fairly likely the case would be dismissed,” said Lee Levine, a retired media lawyer with decades of experience litigating defamation cases, including some for The Times.Though The Times reviewed a draft of the complaint before it was filed, it agreed with Mr. Stringer not to share details of the case with Mr. Levine or anyone else ahead of time.Mr. Stringer and his lawyers were clearly aware of the statutory limits. The suit filed on Monday made no mention of a second woman, Teresa Logan, who followed Ms. Kim’s allegations by accusing Mr. Stringer of kissing and groping her at a bar he helped found in the 1990s. That instance, Mr. Stringer conceded, was clearly outside the statute of limitations.Mr. Stringer said in 2021 that he had “no memory” of the woman but added that if they had met, he was sorry to have made her uncomfortable.If the case proceeds, Mr. Stringer and his allies believe the discovery process will turn up new and relevant information related to Ms. Kim’s actions and whether she coordinated her public statements with any of his political rivals.Mr. Stringer is represented in the suit by Milton L. Williams Jr., a former federal prosecutor and white-collar criminal defense lawyer who currently serves as the chair of the New York City Conflicts of Interest Board.After his loss, Mr. Stringer finished out his term as comptroller last December and began a consulting practice. But he almost immediately began discussing a political comeback.He went as far as to briefly campaign for a State Senate seat in Manhattan this spring, but he never actually entered the race. Allies still believe he should be considered a potential heir to Mr. Nadler should the congressman decide to retire.Still, the accusations of misconduct would almost certainly complicate any effort to return to public office.“Right now, I don’t have any plans to run for office. It’s something I’m not ruling out someday,” Mr. Stringer said. “This lawsuit is what’s in front of me at the moment.” More

  • in

    As Scott Stringer's Campaign Reeled, the Media Was Confounded

    Handling a delicate allegation of sexual misconduct is a lot more challenging than covering a horse race.Two days after coming in fifth in the election night count of votes for New York mayor last week, Scott Stringer was sitting in a high-polish diner in TriBeCa, drinking his second bottle of Sprite and trying to figure out what had happened.He held up his iPhone to show me a text message he had received on Election Day from one of the progressive elected officials who had endorsed him and then dropped him after a woman accused him of sexually assaulting her more than 20 years ago. In the text was a photograph of the official’s ranked-choice ballot. Mr. Stringer was ranked first.“This profile in courage,” he began, half laughing. “You can’t make this up. Who does that?”Mr. Stringer, the 61-year-old New York City comptroller, isn’t the only one trying to puzzle out what happened over a few days in April in the campaign. Mr. Stringer, a geeky fixture in Manhattan politics, had been among the leading candidates when the woman, Jean Kim, accused him of touching her without her consent in the back of taxis. Suddenly he, the media covering him, his supporters and Ms. Kim were all reckoning with big questions of truth, doubt, politics and corroboration.The allegations against Mr. Stringer did not divide a nation, as Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations against Brett Kavanaugh did. Nor did his candidacy carry the kind of high national stakes that came with Tara Reade’s allegations against Joseph R. Biden Jr. last spring. But maybe for those reasons, Ms. Kim’s claim that Mr. Stringer assaulted her when she worked on his New York City public advocate campaign in 2001 offers an opportunity to ask how journalists, political actors and, most important, voters are supposed to weigh claims like Ms. Kim’s. They also raise the question of how and whether to draw a line between those claims and the ones that helped ignite the #MeToo movement.As much as the exposure of police brutality has been driven by cellphone video, the #MeToo movement was powered by investigative journalism, and courageous victims who chose to speak to reporters. The movement reached critical mass with articles by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey of The New York Times and Ronan Farrow of The New Yorker on the movie producer Harvey Weinstein, which the Pulitzer Prize committee described as “explosive” revelations of “long-suppressed allegations of coercion, brutality and victim silencing.” Those stories and other notable sets of revelations — about the financier Jeffrey Epstein, the sports doctor Larry Nassar, the singer R. Kelly, the comedian Bill Cosby — drew power from rigorous reporting that helped develop new standards for covering what had long been dismissed as “he said, she said.”Crucially, reporters honed the craft of corroboration, showing that an accuser had told a friend, a relative or a therapist at the time of the episode and that the accuser wasn’t simply relying on old memories. The reporters also looked for evidence that the accuser’s account was part of a pattern, ruling out a single misunderstanding.Those technical aspects of the stories weren’t always widely understood. But the landmark investigations were, even in this divided moment, unifying. There was no serious partisan division over any of those men’s guilt because the journalistic evidence was simply so overwhelming. But not every allegation — and not every true allegation — can meet that standard. Not every victim is able to talk about it immediately; not every bad act is part of a pattern.In the case of Mr. Stringer and Ms. Kim, observers were left simply with his claim their relationship was consensual, and hers that it wasn’t. Ms. Kim’s lawyer had circulated a news release, which didn’t mention Ms. Kim, to reporters the evening of April 27.At her news conference on April 28, Patricia Pastor, Ms. Kim’s lawyer, read a statement based on Ms. Kim’s recollection, which didn’t include contemporaneous corroboration, which Ms. Kim said didn’t exist, or a suggestion of a pattern. And the lawyer angled the statement for maximum impact: The statement referred to Ms. Kim, for instance, as an “intern,” when she had been a 30-year-old volunteer. And Ms. Pastor claimed, incorrectly, that Ms. Kim had been introduced to Mr. Stringer by Eric Schneiderman, who was forced to resign as New York’s attorney general in 2018 after a report that he had physically abused at least four women.Mr. Stringer said he had a passing, consensual relationship with Ms. Kim and was stunned by her claims that they had never had a relationship. But he said that he understood why the media picked up the story, even if it hadn’t been corroborated.“Running for mayor, every part of your life is an open book,” he said. “I didn’t begrudge anybody, including The Times, from writing about the charge. That would be silly.”And victims, of course, have no obligation to tell their stories through skeptical journalists. Ms. Pastor pointed out in an interview that “once the story was out, you still have time” to report it out and check the facts, and said she and her client didn’t object to that fact-checking. The Times’s Katie Glueck did that on May 9 and found Ms. Kim and Mr. Stringer telling very different stories in the absence of definitive evidence.Jean Kim said Mr. Stringer assaulted her when she worked on his New York City public advocate campaign in 2001. He has denied her claim.Sarah Blesener for The New York TimesBut by then, the story had jumped out of journalists’ hands and into politicians’. Mr. Stringer had painstakingly assembled a coalition of young progressives, including a cadre of state senators who had partly defined their careers by pressing to extend the statute of limitations in cases of child sexual abuse and telling their own harrowing stories. In a video call the day after Ms. Kim’s news conference, they pressed Mr. Stringer to issue a statement suggesting he and Ms. Kim might have perceived their interaction differently.When he refused, and flatly denied the allegation, 10 progressive officials withdrew their endorsement.That decision got journalists off the hook. Most were covering a simple, political story now — a collapsing campaign — and not weighing or investigating a complex #MeToo allegation.The progressive website The Intercept (which had exposed a trumped-up sexual misconduct claim against a gay Democrat in Massachusetts last year) also looked into Ms. Kim’s accusations, calling former Stringer campaign aides, and found that a series of widely reported details from Ms. Pastor’s statement — though not Ms. Kim’s core allegations — were inaccurate. A longtime New York political hand who had known both Mr. Stringer and Ms. Kim at the time, Mike McGuire, also told me he’d been waiting to talk on the record about what he saw as factual errors in Ms. Kim’s lawyer’s account, but that I was only the second reporter to call him, after Ms. Glueck. Ms. Kim, meanwhile, had been open about her motives — she wanted voters to know about the allegation.It’s easy to blame the relative lack of curiosity about the underlying story on the cliché of a hollowed-out local press corps, but that’s not really true in this case. The New York mayor’s race received rich and often ambitious coverage, as good and varied as I’ve seen at least since 2001, often from newer outlets like Politico and The City. The winner of the vote’s first round, Eric Adams, saw reporters investigate his donors and peer into his refrigerator.In an article in Columbia Journalism Review, Andrea Gabor examined coverage of the race and found that the allegations had prompted news organizations to stop covering Mr. Stringer as a top-tier candidate. She suggested that reporters “recalibrate the judgments they make on how to cover candidates such as Stringer in their wake.”In May, Mr. Stringer’s aides told me they were in talks with some former endorsers to return, as well as with the progressive movement’s biggest star, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, when they learned of an allegation from another woman: that some 30 years ago, Mr. Stringer had sexually harassed her when she worked for him at a bar. The Times reported the account of the second woman, Teresa Logan, with corroboration. The next day, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez endorsed Maya Wiley, who came in second after the in-person voting ended. She said that time was running out and that progressives had to unite, a suggestion that the second allegation had made up her mind.But when you get beyond the reporters gaming out winners and losers, and beyond politicians weighing endorsements, here’s the strange thing: It’s not clear there’s anything like a consensus among voters on how the decades-old allegations should have affected Mr. Stringer’s support. Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York, for instance, has weathered far more recent claims from his own aides. And even two of the legislators who dropped their support of Mr. Stringer told me they were still wrestling with the decision and their roles and that of the media. Ms. Ocasio-Cortez seemed to signal a similar concern when, on Election Day, she revealed that she had ranked Mr. Stringer second on her ballot.State Senator Alessandra Biaggi said that the moment had been “incredibly painful” but that she’d begun to feel that “my integrity was being compromised” by staying with Mr. Stringer. She also said that if she were a New York City voter, she would have ranked Mr. Stringer among her top choices, and wished there was space for more nuance in public conversations about sexual misconduct allegations.Yuh-Line Niou, a state assemblywoman from Manhattan, told me she thought the media had unfairly “put a lot of pressure on women who are survivors to speak up,” an experience that had been “scary and in a lot of ways violent.” She said she would have backed Mr. Stringer if he’d acknowledged that he’d harmed Ms. Kim, and added that his denial revealed that he had come from “a time when people don’t talk about what it is to be human, that you have to be perfect somehow.”“I ranked him, of course,” she said. “We didn’t have many choices.”Another progressive who had dropped Mr. Stringer, Representative Jamaal Bowman, said two weeks after Ms. Kim’s allegations became public that “I sometimes regret it because I wasn’t more patient and didn’t ask more questions.”Ms. Kim’s lawyer, Ms. Pastor, said she’d been perplexed by the pained progressives. “You ought to stick to your guns,” she said.It can be hard to separate the entangled roles of media and political actors.“The same way it’s obvious that the media didn’t make Adams rise, it should be obvious that the media didn’t make Stringer fall,” the Daily News columnist and Daily Beast senior editor Harry Siegel told me. “The decision by his lefty endorsers to almost immediately walk away, and before the press had time to vet Kim’s claim, did that. Understanding that the press — and media columnists! — like to center themselves, this is a story about the Democratic Party and its factions more than it’s one about his coverage.”Mr. Stringer said that he was resolved not to relive the campaign, but that he was worried about a progressive movement setting a standard that it can’t meet.“When I think about the future, there’s a lot of progressives who under these scenarios can’t run for office,” he said.Before he headed back out onto Church Street, I asked him what he was going to do next.“Probably just run for governor,” he said, at least half seriously. More

  • in

    An Accusation Blew Up a Campaign. The Media Didn’t Know What to Do.

    Handling a delicate allegation of sexual misconduct is a lot more challenging than covering a horse race.Two days after coming in fifth in the election night count of votes for New York mayor last week, Scott Stringer was sitting in a high-polish diner in TriBeCa, drinking his second bottle of Sprite and trying to figure out what had happened.He held up his iPhone to show me a text message he had received on Election Day from one of the progressive elected officials who had endorsed him and then dropped him after a woman accused him of sexually assaulting her more than 20 years ago. In the text was a photograph of the official’s ranked-choice ballot. Mr. Stringer was ranked first.“This profile in courage,” he began, half laughing. “You can’t make this up. Who does that?”Mr. Stringer, the 61-year-old New York City comptroller, isn’t the only one trying to puzzle out what happened over a few days in April in the campaign. Mr. Stringer, a geeky fixture in Manhattan politics, had been among the leading candidates when the woman, Jean Kim, accused him of touching her without her consent in the back of taxis. Suddenly he, the media covering him, his supporters and Ms. Kim were all reckoning with big questions of truth, doubt, politics and corroboration.The allegations against Mr. Stringer did not divide a nation, as Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations against Brett Kavanaugh did. Nor did his candidacy carry the kind of high national stakes that came with Tara Reade’s allegations against Joseph R. Biden Jr. last spring. But maybe for those reasons, Ms. Kim’s claim that Mr. Stringer assaulted her when she worked on his New York City public advocate campaign in 2001 offers an opportunity to ask how journalists, political actors and, most important, voters are supposed to weigh claims like Ms. Kim’s. They also raise the question of how and whether to draw a line between those claims and the ones that helped ignite the #MeToo movement.As much as the exposure of police brutality has been driven by cellphone video, the #MeToo movement was powered by investigative journalism, and courageous victims who chose to speak to reporters. The movement reached critical mass with articles by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey of The New York Times and Ronan Farrow of The New Yorker on the movie producer Harvey Weinstein, which the Pulitzer Prize committee described as “explosive” revelations of “long-suppressed allegations of coercion, brutality and victim silencing.” Those stories and other notable sets of revelations — about the financier Jeffrey Epstein, the sports doctor Larry Nassar, the singer R. Kelly, the comedian Bill Cosby — drew power from rigorous reporting that helped develop new standards for covering what had long been dismissed as “he said, she said.”Crucially, reporters honed the craft of corroboration, showing that an accuser had told a friend, a relative or a therapist at the time of the episode and that the accuser wasn’t simply relying on old memories. The reporters also looked for evidence that the accuser’s account was part of a pattern, ruling out a single misunderstanding.Those technical aspects of the stories weren’t always widely understood. But the landmark investigations were, even in this divided moment, unifying. There was no serious partisan division over any of those men’s guilt because the journalistic evidence was simply so overwhelming. But not every allegation — and not every true allegation — can meet that standard. Not every victim is able to talk about it immediately; not every bad act is part of a pattern.In the case of Mr. Stringer and Ms. Kim, observers were left simply with his claim their relationship was consensual, and hers that it wasn’t. Ms. Kim’s lawyer had circulated a news release, which didn’t mention Ms. Kim, to reporters the evening of April 27.At her news conference on April 28, Patricia Pastor, Ms. Kim’s lawyer, read a statement based on Ms. Kim’s recollection, which didn’t include contemporaneous corroboration, which Ms. Kim said didn’t exist, or a suggestion of a pattern. And the lawyer angled the statement for maximum impact: The statement referred to Ms. Kim, for instance, as an “intern,” when she had been a 30-year-old volunteer. And Ms. Pastor claimed, incorrectly, that Ms. Kim had been introduced to Mr. Stringer by Eric Schneiderman, who was forced to resign as New York’s attorney general in 2018 after a report that he had physically abused at least four women.Mr. Stringer said he had a passing, consensual relationship with Ms. Kim and was stunned by her claims that they had never had a relationship. But he said that he understood why the media picked up the story, even if it hadn’t been corroborated.“Running for mayor, every part of your life is an open book,” he said. “I didn’t begrudge anybody, including The Times, from writing about the charge. That would be silly.”And victims, of course, have no obligation to tell their stories through skeptical journalists. Ms. Pastor pointed out in an interview that “once the story was out, you still have time” to report it out and check the facts, and said she and her client didn’t object to that fact-checking. The Times’s Katie Glueck did that on May 9 and found Ms. Kim and Mr. Stringer telling very different stories in the absence of definitive evidence.Jean Kim said Mr. Stringer assaulted her when she worked on his New York City public advocate campaign in 2001. He has denied her claim.Sarah Blesener for The New York TimesBut by then, the story had jumped out of journalists’ hands and into politicians’. Mr. Stringer had painstakingly assembled a coalition of young progressives, including a cadre of state senators who had partly defined their careers by pressing to extend the statute of limitations in cases of child sexual abuse and telling their own harrowing stories. In a video call the day after Ms. Kim’s news conference, they pressed Mr. Stringer to issue a statement suggesting he and Ms. Kim might have perceived their interaction differently.When he refused, and flatly denied the allegation, 10 progressive officials withdrew their endorsement.That decision got journalists off the hook. Most were covering a simple, political story now — a collapsing campaign — and not weighing or investigating a complex #MeToo allegation.The progressive website The Intercept (which had exposed a trumped-up sexual misconduct claim against a gay Democrat in Massachusetts last year) also looked into Ms. Kim’s accusations, calling former Stringer campaign aides, and found that a series of widely reported details from Ms. Pastor’s statement — though not Ms. Kim’s core allegations — were inaccurate. A longtime New York political hand who had known both Mr. Stringer and Ms. Kim at the time, Mike McGuire, also told me he’d been waiting to talk on the record about what he saw as factual errors in Ms. Kim’s lawyer’s account, but that I was only the second reporter to call him, after Ms. Glueck. Ms. Kim, meanwhile, had been open about her motives — she wanted voters to know about the allegation.It’s easy to blame the relative lack of curiosity about the underlying story on the cliché of a hollowed-out local press corps, but that’s not really true in this case. The New York mayor’s race received rich and often ambitious coverage, as good and varied as I’ve seen at least since 2001, often from newer outlets like Politico and The City. The winner of the vote’s first round, Eric Adams, saw reporters investigate his donors and peer into his refrigerator.In an article in Columbia Journalism Review, Andrea Gabor examined coverage of the race and found that the allegations had prompted news organizations to stop covering Mr. Stringer as a top-tier candidate. She suggested that reporters “recalibrate the judgments they make on how to cover candidates such as Stringer in their wake.”In May, Mr. Stringer’s aides told me they were in talks with some former endorsers to return, as well as with the progressive movement’s biggest star, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, when they learned of an allegation from another woman: that some 30 years ago, Mr. Stringer had sexually harassed her when she worked for him at a bar. The Times reported the account of the second woman, Teresa Logan, with corroboration. The next day, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez endorsed Maya Wiley, who came in second after the in-person voting ended. She said that time was running out and that progressives had to unite, a suggestion that the second allegation had made up her mind.But when you get beyond the reporters gaming out winners and losers, and beyond politicians weighing endorsements, here’s the strange thing: It’s not clear there’s anything like a consensus among voters on how the decades-old allegations should have affected Mr. Stringer’s support. Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York, for instance, has weathered far more recent claims from his own aides. And even two of the legislators who dropped their support of Mr. Stringer told me they were still wrestling with the decision and their roles and that of the media. Ms. Ocasio-Cortez seemed to signal a similar concern when, on Election Day, she revealed that she had ranked Mr. Stringer second on her ballot.State Senator Alessandra Biaggi said that the moment had been “incredibly painful” but that she’d begun to feel that “my integrity was being compromised” by staying with Mr. Stringer. She also said that if she were a New York City voter, she would have ranked Mr. Stringer among her top choices, and wished there was space for more nuance in public conversations about sexual misconduct allegations.Yuh-Line Niou, a state assemblywoman from Manhattan, told me she thought the media had unfairly “put a lot of pressure on women who are survivors to speak up,” an experience that had been “scary and in a lot of ways violent.” She said she would have backed Mr. Stringer if he’d acknowledged that he’d harmed Ms. Kim, and added that his denial revealed that he had come from “a time when people don’t talk about what it is to be human, that you have to be perfect somehow.”“I ranked him, of course,” she said. “We didn’t have many choices.”Another progressive who had dropped Mr. Stringer, Representative Jamaal Bowman, said two weeks after Ms. Kim’s allegations became public that “I sometimes regret it because I wasn’t more patient and didn’t ask more questions.”Ms. Kim’s lawyer, Ms. Pastor, said she’d been perplexed by the pained progressives. “You ought to stick to your guns,” she said.It can be hard to separate the entangled roles of media and political actors.“The same way it’s obvious that the media didn’t make Adams rise, it should be obvious that the media didn’t make Stringer fall,” the Daily News columnist and Daily Beast senior editor Harry Siegel told me. “The decision by his lefty endorsers to almost immediately walk away, and before the press had time to vet Kim’s claim, did that. Understanding that the press — and media columnists! — like to center themselves, this is a story about the Democratic Party and its factions more than it’s one about his coverage.”Mr. Stringer said that he was resolved not to relive the campaign, but that he was worried about a progressive movement setting a standard that it can’t meet.“When I think about the future, there’s a lot of progressives who under these scenarios can’t run for office,” he said.Before he headed back out onto Church Street, I asked him what he was going to do next.“Probably just run for governor,” he said, at least half seriously. More

  • in

    What We Learned from the NYC Mayoral Primary Election

    A campaign that began behind the pandemic-imposed safety measure of Zoom screens ended on Tuesday in a five-borough, bare-knuckled brawl as Eric Adams, a former police captain, took a sizable lead over a splintered field of Democrats in the primary race to become New York City’s next mayor.Maya Wiley, a former civil rights attorney and past adviser to Mayor Bill de Blasio, was narrowly in second, followed closely by Kathryn Garcia, a former city sanitation commissioner. Neither had conceded in a spirited race whose outcome will shape how the city emerges from the pandemic.With Democrats far outnumbering Republicans, the Democratic primary winner would be the heavy favorite in November.With nearly 90 percent of the votes counted, Mr. Adams led in four of the city’s five boroughs — everywhere but Manhattan — though the final results, including the first-ever use of ranked-choice voting for the city, are expected to take weeks.Here are five takeaways from the mayoral primary:1. Eric Adams is leading after defining himself on public safety.A former New York Police Department captain and the current Brooklyn borough president, Mr. Adams framed his candidacy from the start as that of a blue-collar Black man who could battle both rising crime and the city’s history of discriminatory policing.Speaking often of himself in the third person — telling “the Eric Adams story” — he paced the field in centering his campaign on public safety at a moment when a spike in shootings has raised anxiety among New Yorkers. Recent polls have shown that crime emerged as the top issue for voters.“I’m not running just to be the mayor, I’m running to save my city,” he said before the polls closed Tuesday.As of Wednesday morning, he led with roughly 30 percent of the vote — nearly 10 percentage points ahead of his closest rivals — though the final results will be decided in the coming weeks through ranked-choice voting.“What a moment, what a moment, what a moment,” Mr. Adams said, in a speech celebrating being the “first choice” on Tuesday.Pre-election polls had shown Mr. Adams consolidating a plurality of Black support, even with three other prominent Black candidates in the field, Ms. Wiley, Ray McGuire and Dianne Morales, who is Afro-Latino.And on Tuesday his support was indeed strongest in Black communities in Brooklyn and Queens, as he paired his relatively moderate platform with appeals based on his up-from-the-bootstraps biography as a Black leader who made it in New York.While the Democratic Party has been seized with an internal debate about how to tackle the historical mistreatment by police of Black and Latino New Yorkers, Mr. Adams defined his candidacy firmly in opposition to the “defund the police” movement, saying at one point that was a conversation being pushed by “a lot of young white affluent people.”He has leaned on his years in the N.Y.P.D. for credibility on the issue of crime and had some of his sharpest exchanges of the race with Ms. Wiley over the issue, at one point accusing her of wanting “to slash the Police Department budget and shrink the police force at a time when Black and brown babies are being shot in our streets.”2. Because of ranked-choice voting, the counting isn’t over yet.Kathryn Garcia had formed a last-minute alliance with Andrew Yang and he had urged his voters to rank her second.Michelle V. Agins/The New York TimesIn one of the more dramatic developments of the race, Ms. Garcia struck up a late alliance with Andrew Yang, the former 2020 Democratic candidate for president, in the final weekend before the primary, as they campaigned together and he urged his voters to rank her second on their ballots (she did not return the favor).That could benefit Ms. Garcia as she narrowly trailed Ms. Wiley as of early Wednesday, and second-choice support from Yang backers could vault her ahead.The 2021 race is New York’s first time using ranked-choice voting citywide and it has injected uncertainty into the process.Olivia Lapeyrolerie, a former adviser to Mayor Bill de Blasio, said the system had “completely upended any notion of ideological purity.”“Democratic voters in this city aren’t wedded to labels but who they think is the best choice to lead our recovery,” she said.For now, the chance for either Ms. Garcia or Ms. Wiley to catch Mr. Adams would seem to depend on having won the overwhelming support of the other’s backers.Both candidates, at times, had leaned into running to be the first female mayor of the city, though they never campaigned in tandem as Ms. Garcia did with Mr. Yang. (On Tuesday, Beyoncé’s “Run the World (Girls)” was playing at Ms. Wiley’s election night party; Ms. Garcia removed a white blazer onstage to reveal a shirt that said “feminist” on it.)“It is time for a woman to lead this city,” Ms. Garcia said. She urged patience ahead of complete tabulation. “This is going to be not only about the 1s but the 2s and 3s.”Ms. Garcia’s speech was a reminder of her relative newcomer status on the political scene, after a New York Times editorial board endorsement helped her emerge as a favored candidate of the city’s educated elites. On Tuesday, she couldn’t help but remark on the literal glare of the television stage lights. “By the way, they are awfully bright right now,” she said.3. Andrew Yang went from first to fizzled.Though Andrew Yang was an early leader in the race, according to some polls, he soon faded and lagged to a fourth-place finish. Gabriela Bhaskar/The New York TimesThe Andrew Yang for mayor boomlet started, fittingly enough, with a tweet.It was the night of the 2020 primary in New Hampshire and just as Mr. Yang was dropping out of the presidential race, Howard Wolfson, the longtime political consigliere to Michael R. Bloomberg, the former New York City mayor, tweeted that Mr. Yang “would make a very interesting candidate for NYC Mayor in 21.”Mr. Yang’s optimism-infused and energetic candidacy did make waves from the moment he entered. He quickly raised money from loyal supporters, struck up some surprise alliances, including with leaders in the Orthodox Jewish community, zoomed to the front of early polls and attracted an overwhelming amount of media attention.The bright glare of that spotlight seemed to dim Mr. Yang’s star and on Tuesday he had lagged to fourth place and conceded the race. “Celebrity candidates tend to fade,” said Jonathan Rosen, a Democratic strategist in the city.The outsized attention on Mr. Yang did reshape the race. Patrick Gaspard, a veteran New York political operative, lamented on Twitter that it “allowed other candidates to be woefully unexamined until close to the end.”In those final weeks, Mr. Yang had flashed a sharp edge as he sparred with Mr. Adams over both policy and personal matters, highlighting questions about where exactly the Brooklyn borough president lives.“Turned out I was right — he was an interesting candidate,” Mr. Wolfson said on Tuesday. “But interesting does not always equal successful.”4. Maya Wiley and the progressive momentum stalled in the first ballot.Maya Wiley’s performance underscored the struggle by progressives to form a winning coalition. Hilary Swift for The New York TimesAt the start of 2021, the left-leaning lane in the mayor’s race looked to be dangerously overcrowded. But the stars seemed to align about as well as possible for Ms. Wiley’s progressive candidacy in the closing weeks of the campaign.An allegation of sexual harassment from two decades ago against Scott Stringer, the city comptroller, paralyzed his campaign in late April, as some early backers abandoned him. On Tuesday, the collapse was so complete that he was in fifth places in parts of the Upper West Side — his home turf.Then Dianne Morales, who had inspired a left-wing following for her unabashed presentation of progressivism, was hobbled by internal problems, including a unionization effort by her campaign staff that devolved into an acrimonious public fight.Then Ms. Wiley won the coveted endorsement of Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and also Senator Elizabeth Warren.But the results on Tuesday showed that progressives struggled to form a winning coalition in the mayor’s race with three of the top four finishers — Mr. Adams, Mr. Yang and Ms. Garcia — all running either more moderate or technocratic campaigns.For Ms. Wiley, mathematical hopes are still alive that she could overtake Mr. Adams as more ballots, and second choices, are counted.But Mr. Adams’s dismissive remarks about the power of social media on Tuesday — “Social media does not pick a candidate,” he said, “people on Social Security pick a candidate” — seemed to be aimed in almost equal measure at Mr. Yang, who is a social media phenomenon, as well as the left flank of the Democratic Party that rallied around Ms. Wiley.5. Progressives hold hope elsewhere even if Adams wins.Tali Farhadian Weinstein addressing supporters at her primary night celebration in Midtown Manhattan.Sarah Blesener for The New York TimesAlvin Bragg speaking alongside his family at his primary night celebration in Harlem.Dave Sanders for The New York TimesWhile Mr. Adams’s lead was dispiriting to some on the left, New York’s progressives did hold out hope in some other key down-ballot races.In Manhattan, the district attorney’s race was too close to call with Alvin Bragg, a progressive, holding a narrow lead over Tali Farhadian Weinstein. Ms. Weinstein, a more moderate Democrat, had injected more than $8 million of her own money into her campaign in the race’s final weeks, earning the ire of progressives for the spending and her ties to Wall Street.In the city comptroller race to replace the termed out Mr. Stringer, Brad Lander, a progressive from Park Slope, Brooklyn, led Corey Johnson, the City Council speaker, by a similar margin as Mr. Adams led Ms. Wiley in the mayor’s race. Like Ms. Wiley, Mr. Lander had been endorsed by Ms. Ocasio-Cortez and Ms. Warren.Jumaane Williams, the current New York City public advocate and an outspoken progressive, cruised through his primary and won roughly 70 percent of the vote.In one of the marquee City Council races for the left, Tiffany Cabán, who previously ran for Queens district attorney, was leading by a wide margin with backing of the Democratic Socialists of America. Other progressive favorites were leading in council seats, including Sandy Nurse and Jennifer Gutierrez.In Buffalo, New York’s second largest city, India Walton, a Democratic Socialist, was poised to upset the four-term incumbent Democrat, Byron Brown. Mr. Brown is a former New York Democratic Party state chairman and a close ally of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.Katie Glueck and Michael Gold contributed reporting. More

  • in

    Scott Stringer Stops Short of Conceding, Acknowledges Race Appears Lost

    Scott M. Stringer, addressing supporters at a results-watching party on the Upper West Side shortly after polls closed, appeared to acknowledge on Tuesday that his longstanding dream of becoming mayor had come up short, without explicitly conceding that the race was over.Citing his long career in government and politics, Mr. Stringer, the city comptroller, gave what amounted to a valedictory to a campaign that he began as a leading contender, only to fade after two women leveled decades-old accusations of sexual harassment against him.“This was a very tough election for me and my family,” said Mr. Stringer, with his wife, Elyse Buxbaum, at his side “but it was a very inspirational one as well.”He pledged to support “the next mayor,” and he also made it clear he was not finished with public service.“I want to tell all of you that I’m not going anywhere,” he said to cheers and applause.Earlier, before Mr. Stringer spoke, his supporters had remained optimistic that a late surge would push him to victory.“I see the numbers. I see the statistics, and they don’t seem to favor him,” said Hamid Kherief of Manhattan, who was taking a smoking break outside The Ribbon, the restaurant where the watch party was held. “But I think we do rely on the last push.”Mr. Kherief, 65, of the Algerian-American Association in New York, said he liked Mr. Stringer for his deep ties to city government and “the establishment.” He acknowledged that Mr. Stringer’s campaign had been hurt by the sexual harassment accusations, which the candidate denied. More

  • in

    Fluid NYC Mayoral Race Heads to a Close as Voters Cast Ballots

    .s-carousel{margin:0;padding:0;max-width:600px;margin:auto}.s-carousel__slides{position:relative;padding-top:min(600px,100%);background:#000}.s-carousel img,.s-carousel video{margin:0;padding:0;width:100%;height:100%;object-fit:contain}.s-carousel figure{margin:0;padding:0;position:relative}.s-carousel__credit{z-index:10;position:absolute;bottom:15px;left:15px;text-align:left;font-family:nyt-franklin,Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;font-weight:500;font-size:.75rem;color:#fff;opacity:.6}.s-carousel figcaption{z-index:10;top:15px;left:15px;width:75%;letter-spacing:.01em;position:absolute;text-align:left;font-family:nyt-franklin,Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;font-weight:700;text-shadow:0 0 10px rgba(0,0,0,.25),1px 1px 1px rgba(0,0,0,.35),-1px -1px 1px rgba(0,0,0,.35);font-size:1.0625rem;line-height:1.3125rem;color:#fff}.s-carousel li,.s-carousel ol{list-style:none;margin:0;padding:0}.s-carousel__viewport{width:100%;position:absolute;top:0;left:0;bottom:0;display:flex;overflow-x:scroll;overflow-y:hidden;scroll-behavior:smooth;scroll-snap-type:x mandatory}@media (prefers-reduced-motion){.s-carousel__viewport{scroll-behavior:auto}}.s-carousel__viewport{-ms-overflow-style:none;scrollbar-width:none;scrollbar-color:transparent transparent;-webkit-user-select:none;user-select:none}.s-carousel__viewport::-webkit-scrollbar{width:0;display:none}.s-carousel__viewport::-webkit-scrollbar-track{background:0 0}.s-carousel__viewport::-webkit-scrollbar-thumb{background:0 0;border:none}.s-carousel figure:focus,.s-carousel image:focus,.s-carousel video:focus{outline:0;box-shadow:none}.s-carousel__slide{width:100%;height:100%;position:relative;flex:0 0 100%;scroll-snap-align:start}.s-carousel__slide figure{width:100%;height:100%;display:flex;align-items:center}.s-carousel__tap-to-unmute-overlay{height:100%;width:100%;position:absolute;z-index:100;animation:fade-in .5s ease-out forwards;background-color:transparent;border:none}.s-carousel__tap-to-unmute-icon{pointer-events:none;background-color:#00000099;padding:10px;border-radius:50%;position:absolute;top:15px;right:15px}.s-carousel__tap-to-unmute-icon svg{display:block;fill:#fff;width:20px;height:20px}.s-carousel__tap-to-unmute-icon svg path{stroke:#fff}.s-carousel__kebob{display:flex;justify-content:center;margin-top:15px}.s-carousel__bob{display:inline-block;width:6px;height:6px;background:#121212;opacity:.3;background-clip:content-box;border:3px solid transparent;border-radius:50%;font-size:0;transition:transform .4s}.s-carousel__bob[data-active=true]{opacity:.8}.s-carousel__navigation{margin-top:15px;display:flex;justify-content:space-between;align-items:center}.s-carousel__arrows{width:50px;display:flex;justify-content:space-between;align-items:center}@media (hover:none){.s-carousel__arrows{visibility:hidden}}.s-carousel__arrow{all:unset;cursor:pointer}.s-carousel__arrow svg{pointer-events:none;fill:#333;transition:fill .15s}.s-carousel__arrow:hover svg{fill:#ccc}.s-carousel__closed-captions-container{position:absolute;z-index:11;bottom:35px;margin:0 auto;left:0;right:0;text-align:center}.s-carousel__closed-captions{font-size:1rem;color:#fff;background-color:rgba(0,0,0,.9);padding:5px;font-family:nyt-franklin,Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;visibility:hidden}@media (max-width:600px){.s-carousel figcaption{width:75%;letter-spacing:.01em}.s-carousel__closed-captions{font-size:.8125rem}}Maya Wiley in HarlemHilary Swift for The New York TimesAndrew Yang on the Upper West SideGabriela Bhaskar/The New York TimesEric Adams in Crown HeightsJames Estrin/The New York TimesKathryn Garcia in Co-Op CityMichelle V. Agins/The New York TimesScott Stringer on the Upper East SideAndrew Seng for The New York Timesslide 1slide 2slide 3slide 4slide 5 As far as the eye could see, New York City was covered with Democratic candidates for mayor on Tuesday. Maya Wiley rode on the back of a scooter through Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Andrew Yang interrupted a brunch on the Upper West Side. Eric Adams, by turns triumphant and tearful, basked in the sound of supporters chanting his name after he voted in Bedford-Stuyvesant.From the Bronx to Staten Island, voters also turned out, heading to the polls to choose the Democrat who will almost certainly become the next mayor of the nation’s biggest city as it charts a still-tentative course toward recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.The fractious primary, with more than a dozen candidates, has been filled with unknowns and is in some ways unprecedented. It is New York’s first citywide experience with ranked-choice voting, in which voters can choose up to five candidates in many of the races on this year’s ballot. Under the system, the candidate with the most first-place votes after the initial count might not be the ultimate winner, and the final results may not be known for weeks. The devastation wrought by the pandemic, which claimed the lives of more than 30,000 city residents and wiped out over a million jobs, has raised the importance of the race, even as the scope of the losses sometimes made it hard for candidates to get the electorate’s attention.Voters casting their ballots at a community center in Bushwick, Brooklyn.Sarah Blesener for The New York TimesOn Tuesday, at least, they had it.“You have to win,” a voter in the Bronx told Kathryn Garcia. “I’m working on it,” she replied. Cindy Schreibman, a Manhattan voter who said she had ranked Mr. Adams first and Ms. Garcia second, spelled out the stakes.“This city’s on the precipice — it could go down, it could go up, it could stay the same,” Ms. Schreibman, 64, said. “What I’m very, very passionate about is as a lifelong New Yorker, making sure that this city is safe, clean, and fair.”The race remained fluid. Mr. Adams, the Brooklyn borough president and a retired police captain whose emphasis on public safety during a spring marked by a spike in gun violence seemed to gain traction, has led narrowly in recent polls. But Mr. Yang, the exuberant former presidential candidate; Ms. Wiley, a former City Hall counsel and MSNBC legal analyst; and Ms. Garcia, a no-nonsense former sanitation commissioner, all have a shot. A city that boasts of its diversity seems likely to have its first Asian, first female or second Black mayor.New Yorkers were also voting in primaries for Manhattan district attorney, one of the most influential elected law-enforcement posts in the nation; comptroller and public advocate, two citywide offices that often function as government watchdogs; and City Council and borough president. Registered Democrats make up two thirds of the city’s 5.6 million voters, and with no broadly popular Republican candidate, the victor in the Democratic mayoral primary is all but certain to succeed Mayor Bill de Blasio, a two-term Democrat being forced to leave office by term limits.Turnout seemed relatively light early in the day, with some polling places nearly empty and few snaking lines. That, too, might have had something to do with another new wrinkle: early voting for the first time in a mayoral primary. Almost 200,000 voters cast ballots in person before Tuesday. Another 220,000 requested absentee ballots. An alliance between Mr. Yang and Ms. Garcia in the campaign’s closing days — he urged his supporters to rank her No. 2 on their ballots, and the two campaigned side by side — provided some last-minute drama. Mr. Adams and some of his allies suggested that the two had teamed up to prevent a Black or Latino candidate from becoming mayor (Mr. Adams is Black; Ms. Garcia, despite her surname, is white). Several of Mr. Adams’s opponents denounced the criticism as unfounded and cynical.On Tuesday, a calm seemed to have settled over the race. “We need to turn the page from the politics of attack and division,” Mr. Yang said at a morning appearance in the Bronx. Mr. Adams, likewise, dismissed what he called efforts “to create a crisis on the day of the election” at a campaign stop in Midtown Manhattan.Katie Glueck, Alexandra E. Petri and Sean Piccoli contributed reporting. More

  • in

    Scenes From the Final Day of Early Voting

    [Want to get New York Today by email? Here’s the sign-up.]It’s Monday. Weather: Partly sunny, with a high around 90. Scattered storms beginning this evening. Alternate-side parking: In effect until July 4 (Independence Day). Clockwise from top left: Michelle V. Agins/The New York Times; James Estrin/The New York Times; Hilary Swift for The New York Times; Andrew Seng for The New York TimesThe last day of early voting saw the top Democratic mayoral candidates fanning out across the city to make their final pitch to voters before Primary Day on Tuesday.[A swirl of activity was marked by creative politicking and deepening acrimony between Eric Adams and the rest of the field.]Here are a few scenes from Sunday:Garcia and Yang go for a walk in ChinatownKathryn Garcia, a former sanitation commissioner, and Andrew Yang, a former presidential candidate, appeared together in Chinatown ahead of a get-out-the-vote rally focused on attacks against people of Asian descent. It was the second display of unity between the rivals this weekend.Mr. Yang has encouraged his supporters to mark Ms. Garcia as their second choice on the ranked-choice ballots. But despite the apparent solidarity, Ms. Garcia has not returned the favor, saying she will not tell her supporters how to rank their ballots.Adams talks street violenceEric Adams, the Brooklyn borough president and presumed front-runner, denounced gun violence by returning to a Bronx street where a masked man had nearly shot two young children while attacking another man. “We need to get him,” Mr. Adams said of the gunman, his voice rising in anger. “He needs to be off our streets.”Stringer and family canvass the Lower East SideScott M. Stringer, the city comptroller, and his wife and two sons canvassed the Lower East Side of Manhattan, stopping to talk to voters, many of whom greeted the candidate warmly. At one point, a neighborhood resident asked Mr. Stringer for a photo.“That’ll cost you a first-place vote,” Mr. Stringer joked.Maya Wiley goes to church and then hula-hoopsMaya Wiley, a former MSNBC analyst and counsel to Mayor Bill de Blasio, spent Sunday morning at two Black churches in Harlem and Brooklyn. Later in the day, she was seen hula-hooping at the Tompkins Avenue Merchants Association Festival.More on the mayor’s race:Why We May Not Know Who Won the Mayoral Primary for WeeksWho Do the Billionaires Want for Mayor? Follow Their Money.From The TimesNew York Faces Lasting Economic Toll Even as Pandemic PassesNew York City Lost 900,000 Jobs. Here’s How Many Have Come Back.‘It Hurts’: Season Is Over Before Nets See How Good Big Three Can BeWant more news? Check out our full coverage.The Mini Crossword: Here is today’s puzzle.What we’re readingEight candidates running to be the next city comptroller took part in a televised debate Sunday morning. [Gothamist]New York City’s building sector remains 25,000 jobs below its prepandemic peak — a warning sign for the construction industry. [The City]Service cuts on the B, D, N, Q and R lines are likely to continue through November 2022. [Daily News].css-1xzcza9{list-style-type:disc;padding-inline-start:1em;}.css-3btd0c{font-family:nyt-franklin,helvetica,arial,sans-serif;font-size:1rem;line-height:1.375rem;color:#333;margin-bottom:0.78125rem;}@media (min-width:740px){.css-3btd0c{font-size:1.0625rem;line-height:1.5rem;margin-bottom:0.9375rem;}}.css-3btd0c strong{font-weight:600;}.css-3btd0c em{font-style:italic;}.css-w739ur{margin:0 auto 5px;font-family:nyt-franklin,helvetica,arial,sans-serif;font-weight:700;font-size:1.125rem;line-height:1.3125rem;color:#121212;}#NYT_BELOW_MAIN_CONTENT_REGION .css-w739ur{font-family:nyt-cheltenham,georgia,’times new roman’,times,serif;font-weight:700;font-size:1.375rem;line-height:1.625rem;}@media (min-width:740px){#NYT_BELOW_MAIN_CONTENT_REGION .css-w739ur{font-size:1.6875rem;line-height:1.875rem;}}@media (min-width:740px){.css-w739ur{font-size:1.25rem;line-height:1.4375rem;}}.css-9s9ecg{margin-bottom:15px;}.css-uf1ume{display:-webkit-box;display:-webkit-flex;display:-ms-flexbox;display:flex;-webkit-box-pack:justify;-webkit-justify-content:space-between;-ms-flex-pack:justify;justify-content:space-between;}.css-wxi1cx{display:-webkit-box;display:-webkit-flex;display:-ms-flexbox;display:flex;-webkit-flex-direction:column;-ms-flex-direction:column;flex-direction:column;-webkit-align-self:flex-end;-ms-flex-item-align:end;align-self:flex-end;}.css-12vbvwq{background-color:white;border:1px solid #e2e2e2;width:calc(100% – 40px);max-width:600px;margin:1.5rem auto 1.9rem;padding:15px;box-sizing:border-box;}@media (min-width:740px){.css-12vbvwq{padding:20px;width:100%;}}.css-12vbvwq:focus{outline:1px solid #e2e2e2;}#NYT_BELOW_MAIN_CONTENT_REGION .css-12vbvwq{border:none;padding:10px 0 0;border-top:2px solid #121212;}.css-12vbvwq[data-truncated] .css-rdoyk0{-webkit-transform:rotate(0deg);-ms-transform:rotate(0deg);transform:rotate(0deg);}.css-12vbvwq[data-truncated] .css-eb027h{max-height:300px;overflow:hidden;-webkit-transition:none;transition:none;}.css-12vbvwq[data-truncated] .css-5gimkt:after{content:’See more’;}.css-12vbvwq[data-truncated] .css-6mllg9{opacity:1;}.css-qjk116{margin:0 auto;overflow:hidden;}.css-qjk116 strong{font-weight:700;}.css-qjk116 em{font-style:italic;}.css-qjk116 a{color:#326891;-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;text-underline-offset:1px;-webkit-text-decoration-thickness:1px;text-decoration-thickness:1px;-webkit-text-decoration-color:#326891;text-decoration-color:#326891;}.css-qjk116 a:visited{color:#326891;-webkit-text-decoration-color:#326891;text-decoration-color:#326891;}.css-qjk116 a:hover{-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;}And finally: New York reopens, but normalcy is elusive The Times’s Troy Closson writes:The lives of New Yorkers were marked by solitude and alarm during the worst months of the pandemic: Tens of thousands died, thousands of businesses closed and the city’s regular tempo screeched to a halt. But as vaccination rates have climbed, the city’s long hibernation has begun to end.When some capacity restrictions and mask mandates fell away, neighbors, for the first time in months, greeted one other with bright smiles, no longer struggling to recognize the person behind the mask. Family members and friends reunited with long-sought embraces. Still, some parts of pandemic life — temperature checks and socially distanced lunch tables — remained.Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s order last week to lift almost all virus restrictions on businesses and social gatherings represented one of the final steps in the city’s reopening. The governor said the new guidance represented a “return to life as we know it.”But for some, the news was only a symbolic triumph, as the most stringent restrictions had been removed weeks ago. And the decision over whether to do away with precautions lies with individuals and business owners, many of whom said the governor’s announcement would not spur immediate change.“We’re not back to normal,” said Sedonia Croom, a longtime worker at Croom Boutique Salon & Spa, a family-run business in the Crotona area of the Bronx. The shop, she said, has no immediate plans to throw out its face-covering or capacity guidelines.“You still got to protect yourself and your clients,” Ms. Croom said. “You have no other choice.”It’s Monday — start anew.Metropolitan Diary: Playing hookyDear Diary:As a teenager, I lived along the Hudson River near the Croton-Harmon train station. During my senior year in the high school, I would cut class, take the train to New York City and use my babysitting money to go to museums.I knew when all the free and discount days for students were, and I would bring a book of my father’s that listed cheap and interesting restaurants where I could go for lunch. I would get back to school in time to take the bus home (or at least to make it look like I had).One time, I was headed home on the train and I spotted my father. (I found out later that he had left work early because he was sick.)I moved up a couple of cars and hid in the bathroom the rest of the way.I never told my parents.— Cheryl MayrsohnNew York Today is published weekdays around 6 a.m. Sign up here to get it by email. You can also find it at nytoday.com. More