NEW YORK - Mayor Bill de Blasio looked ahead to his plans for his second term at City Hall Wednesday after cruising to re-election.
De Blasio fended off token opposition to win a second term as the leader of the nation's largest city.
De Blasio, a Democrat, easily defeated Republican state lawmaker Nicole Malliotakis and several third-party candidates. The Associated Press called the election for de Blasio shortly after polls closed in the city, which leans heavily Democratic.
Mayor Bill de Blasio gives re-election acceptance speech
On the campaign trail, de Blasio touted his rollout of universal pre-kindergarten for 4-year-olds and efforts to increase affordable housing. He also cited low crime rates and his work to address his city's notoriously high cost of living.
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First elected four years ago, de Blasio emerged as a national leader in progressive politics. But his administration often found itself bogged down in feuds with Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a fellow Democrat, and investigations into campaign donations and pay-to-play politics.
De Blasio's toughest challenger on Tuesday, Malliotakis, called the mayor ineffective. Third-party candidates in the race included independent Bo Dietl, a former detective.
Malliotakis said she and her supporters sent a clear message. "Although we did not win this election we were loud and clear that the status quo must end and that there are many people, thousands of people across this city that deserve to be heard," she said.
"Things are still not what they need to be in this city," said de Blasio. "We've got to become a fairer city and we've got to do it soon, do it fast. We've got to put everything we've got into it."
Part of the mayor's victory speech was also aimed at President Trump.
"New York City sent a message to the White House as well," he said. "Our message was this: you can't take on New York values and win, Mr. President. If you turn against the values of your hometown, your hometown will fight back."
Voter turnout was low, with only 22 percent of registered voters showing up to the polls.
The 56-year-old mayor has vowed that in his second term he will further expand pre-kindergarten to 3-year-olds and increase investments in affordable housing.
He also has promised to continue to speak out for the city's immigrant and minority communities and be a vocal critic of President Trump.
The city leans heavily to the left, with Democrats outnumbering Republicans by a 6-1 ratio.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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