New Yorkers, true to the stereotype, enjoy being jerks. On Election Day, a special subset of those jerks like to write-in joke candidates for important races. Bill de Blasio better hope his vote total on Tuesday tops the number of votes for mayor he got in 2009 — one, the same number of votes cast for the 20th century's most notorious mass murderer. Both, however, were clobbered by Monty Burns.
To its credit (and as part of its job), the city's Board of Elections produces an official tally of every vote cast in the city for every contest. Here's 2009's, providing thorough documentation of how incumbent mayor Michael Bloomberg squeaked past Democrat Bill Thompson. For those unfamiliar with New York politics, take a look just to see how fusion balloting works.
But it's more fun to look at those write-ins. That year, de Blasio appeared on the citywide ballot for the first time, running for the position of Public Advocate. But some fan — in his home borough of Brooklyn — decided that de Blasio should move up to the big job right away. Meaning that Tuesday isn't the first time de Blasio won a mayoral vote in a general election. It wasn't quite enough to top Bloomberg's 580,000, but it was better than nothing.
Barely. De Blasio was beaten not only by Bloomberg, but by a host of other people, real and imaginary — including three of his 2013 primary opponents. At least he tied Hitler. As for his current opponent, Republican Joe Lhota, de Blasio beat him in 2009, too, one vote to zero.
Rudy Giuliani, former mayor: 11 votes
Bill Clinton: 3
Hillary Clinton: 3
Michael Bloomberg, incumbent: 3
George Pataki, former governor: 2
Abraham Lincoln: 1
David Dinkins, former mayor: 1
Ed Koch, former mayor: 1
Teddy Roosevelt: 1
Joe Lhota: 0
Rudy Giuliani, ever-popular two-term mayor of New York and the man responsible for preventing 9/11, was the most popular pick in this category among write-in voters. Bloomberg, who was actually on the ballot a little further up, tied both of the Clintons in write-in votes, which is pretty good. Hillary Clinton got three times the votes of either Lincoln or Roosevelt, which bodes well for 2016.
Lhota, who most people had never heard of in 2009, gets a goose egg.
Anthony Weiner: 5 votes
Bill Thompson: 4
Christine Quinn: 3
Thompson, like Bloomberg, was on the ballot already, so there wasn't much need to write him in (much less using three different spellings of his name). Weiner, who at that point was simply an enthusiastic member of the House of Representatives with a hobby he kept to himself, was considered a front-runner in the mayoral race until Bloomberg extended term limits.
C. Montgomery Burns, evil billioniare (non incumbent): 27 votes
Mickey Mouse: 2
Adam West, the original TV Batman: 1
Alfred E. Neuman: 1
Dr. Doom: 1
Glenn Beck: 1
Howard Stern: 1
Sleeping Beauty: 1
By far the top write-in candidate was Mr. Burns from The Simpsons, because New Yorkers decided they'd like to have a super-rich, older white man run the city by forcing adherence to his own set of draconian rules and we could go on with this joke, but we assume you get it. Dr. Doom, Hitler, and Glenn Beck all tied. (Doom and Beck's votes came from Brooklyn; Hitler's, from Staten Island.)
Famous New Yorkers
Naked Cowboy: 4 votes
Reverend Billy, activist: 4
Curtis Sliwa, Guardian Angels founder: 1
Derek Jeter, lothario: 1
The Naked Cowboy (at right, with Larry the Cable Guy) tied labor enthusiast Rev. Billy for first place in this category. Both stick to mostly-white outfits since, truth be told, the cowboy wears a diaper / tighty whiteys sort of thing.
Speaking of diapers, Jeter's vote came from Brooklyn, somewhat surprisingly.
Mike Hunt, fictional character: 1 votes
Somebody Worth Voting For, fictional character: 1
Based on this, we can make three predictions. One, de Blasio will get more votes in 2013 than in 2009. Two, so will Lhota, probably. Third, people in Brooklyn like writing in joke candidates on their ballots.
All images from the AP, except Monty Burns which is a still from The Simpsons.