London Breed Is The First Black Woman Mayor Of San Francisco…By A Hair
Every vote really does count! And the result is another black woman making political history.
Yesterday, the City by the Bay elected its first black woman mayor, London Breed. The 43-year-old is the current President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, and as an underdog, she won a tight race against Senator Mark Leno who ended up conceding to her.
Breed will serve as mayor until 2020, finishing the term of the late Mayor Ed Lee who died in December of cardiac arrest. Although Leno’s concession is what gave Breed the victory, she declared that she would be the mayor of all San Franciscans.
“Whether you voted for me or not, as mayor, I will be your mayor too,” she said.
The Democratic primary election was held on June 5, and according to CNN, the San Francisco Department of Elections initially had Leno pulling ahead, but as more votes were counted, Breed took the lead. As of yesterday, it’s still processing about 6,700 ballots, with Breed holding the lead by 2,177 votes.
Sen. Leno called Breed yesterday morning after realizing that as ballots were being counted, he would not win.
“I called Supervisor London Breed this morning to congratulate her on her victory and to wish her every success,” he said to the Associated Press.
Breed’s victory marks the end of not only a tight race but the end of a reality show’s dream of a political circus.
After Lee’s death, Breed was actually appointed acting mayor, making her the city’s first black female chief executive. But weeks after, the Board of Supervisors voted to remove her from the position. Their argument was that Breed was given too much power to act as both acting mayor and President of the Board to be running for the permanent mayoral position.
So, Breed was removed as acting mayor in January, and five months later, she became the victor. Won’t he do it!
With the drama behind her, she declared that, as mayor, her focus would be on what San Francisco currently needs. She mentioned homelessness and housing, two challenges that would be among the top of her list.
And when she was asked how she feels about the accomplishment of being the first black woman mayor of San Francisco, she expressed how honored she was and how her win would be a shining example for other future leaders of color.
“It’s really amazing, and it’s really an honor…I grew up in some of the most challenging of circumstances, and the reason I feel so incredible about this is because I think the message that this sends to the next generation of young people in this city is that 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…I’m really proud of this accomplishment, and it’s because of so many people that are here today.”
You can check out Breed’s news conference below.
Renese spends her early mornings writing, her days securing insurance for TV shows, and her in-betweens blogging about the silliness and seriousness of life on her blog. Follow Renese on Twitter: @reneseford