Not so fast, Congressman Charles Rangel.
That triumphant victory speech made just before 11 p.m. on Tuesday night may have been premature. As the numbers in the 13th Congressional district continue to trickle in -- Senator Adriano Espaillat seems to have mounted a more formidable challenge to the long-serving incumbent than many first thought.
A total of 32 precincts have yet to report their unofficial tallies, according to the Associated Press count. The majority of those precincts, 19 of them, are in the Bronx, part of the new territory added to Rangel’s district. That’s also where Team Espaillat had a major get-out-the-vote operation all day Tuesday and leading into the race.
There are also 13 precincts in Manhattan that have not reported their unofficial tallies.
Separately, an election official tells WNYC that there are still 3,000 pieces of paper to be counted – between affidavit ballots and absentee votes – that may be added to the official vote count when it’s certified two weeks from now.
The current tally puts Rangel ahead of Espaillat by 1,032 votes.
On Thursday afternoon, Espaillat allies rallied in front of Rangel’s office in Harlem. City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez said he’s calling on federal election monitors to be part of the counting process.
“We respect the democratic process. We are not jumping into any conclusions,” he said. I have no doubt that after the work is done there will be a different result, a different number than we had on Election Day.”
Team Rangel might be getting a little nervous right about now.