Yes, of course, everyone was watching Virginia, New Jersey and upstate New York on Tuesday’s off-year election night.
But one of the most dramatic stories played out in New York City, where Mayor Mike Bloomberg forced a rewrite of the city’s term-limit law so that he could seek a third term.
Bloomberg left a Republican Party tha had turned exceedingly unpopular in the nation’s largest city, spent an estimated $100 million of his own money and collected endorsements from the major daily newspapers and more than a few Democratic elected officials.
What did it get him?
At one point, with over half the votes counted, Bloomberg led less-than-dazzling Democrat Bill Thompson by barely 3,000 votes.
Bloomberg eventually edging ahead to win by a 50-46 margin.
The mayor said he was “humbled” by the result.
And rightly so.
The margin was too close to make the independent mayor a credible contender for the presidency in 2012.
It wasn’t even a mandate for a third term — at least not a meaningful one.
And people thought Bloomberg was overspending!
Turns out he really did need all $100 million.