Kathryn Garcia 'concerned' about voter confidence after New York City's ballot discrepancy

It is the city's first crack at an election featuring ranked-choice voting.

Kathryn Garcia 'concerned' about voter confidence after New York City's ballot discrepancy

New York City mayoral contender Kathryn Garcia said Wednesday she is “concerned” that the recent ballot counting snafu by the city’s Board of Elections could undermine confidence in the electoral system.

“I am concerned that it undermines people's confidence. There is no one on my team or where we've been doing observations of opening of ballots that gives us concern that there is something fraudulent happening at all. But we need to make sure that the vote is protected and that we get the result that New Yorkers went to the polls or mailed in at the end of the day,” Garcia told CNN's "New Day" on Wednesday. "I am really hopeful it won't [produce conspiracy theories]. It seems like this was a straightforward mistake, but we will definitely be watching and monitoring as we go forward.”

After ranked-choice votes were tabulated on Tuesday, Garcia, the former commissioner of the city’s Department of Sanitation, trailed the leading candidate, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, by just 2 points. Hours later, the Board of Elections, long plagued by understaffing and underfinancing, admitted it had failed to remove 135,000 test ballots from its tabulation and withdrew those results from its website. There are also more than 120,000 absentee ballots that need to be counted.

Voting experts warned the Board of releasing preliminary results piecemeal and ranked-choice voting supporters are concerned the vote discrepancy opens a window for criticism of the system. The mayoral primary is New York City’s first election featuring ranked-choice voting.