New York City comptroller Scott Stringer has received another important progressive co-sign in the deeply strange mayoral race. On Monday, the United Federation of Teachers announced that they would endorse Stringer, who has been a longtime ally of the union, stating that he offers a “broad coalition and a grassroots movement” and a “city for everybody.”
The UFT endorsement is a boost for Stringer nine weeks out from the June primary: The union has approximately 200,000 members and its endorsement helps him make the argument that he is the progressive candidate to rally behind, as opposed to Andrew Yang, who is the current front-runner. Stringer has also won the support of other education unions, including the union representing principals and administrators and the union representing staff at the City University of New York. Last week, he also received the approval of the Working Families Party. The influential progressive group announced a ranked-choice endorsement for New York’s first ranked-choice election: After Stringer, the WFP endorsed education advocate Dianne Morales and civil-rights attorney Maya Wiley.
With the UFT endorsement in the bag, there’s only one major union nod remaining, from the Transport Workers Union of America. Several prominent labor groups — including the Uniformed Firefighters Association and the city’s largest union of municipal workers — have endorsed Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams, while Maya Wiley won the endorsement of the Service Employees International Union, the city’s largest union.
In addition to testing the new ranked-choice system, in which voters choose multiple candidates according to their preference, the 2021 mayoral race will also be a trial of the importance of union endorsements. Though Yang has not yet received such a nod, he consistently leads polling, including a survey released Monday showing that he was the first choice of 22 percent of likely Democratic voters, followed by Adams at 13 percent and Stringer at 11 percent.