India Walton Set To Become Buffalo’s First Woman Mayor After Winning Democratic Primary

By: Alyssa Wilson

Buffalo mayoral candidate India Walton is one step closer to becoming the city’s first woman and Black woman mayor after defeating incumbent Byron Brown in the Democratic primary.  

Brown, who has severed for four terms, refused to concede on Tuesday night, saying he will wait until every vote was counted. Only 1,536 absentee ballots were returned Tuesday, but more must be tabulated. According to The Buffalo News, with the vast majority of votes cast in early voting combined with election day results, the outcome is not likely to change.  

RELATED: Tishaura Jones elected as first Black woman mayor of St. Louis 

“This is the work of a well-meaning group of rebels and revolutionaries that had a bold vision on what we want the future of our city to look like,” Walton said. “All that we are doing in this moment is claiming what is rightfully ours. We are the workers. We do the work. And we deserve a government that works with and for us.”   

The 38-year-old nurse and union leader is a socialist community activist whose campaign focused on affordable housing, health care and criminal justice reform. Born and raised in Buffalo, she became a teen mom at the age of 14, giving birth to twins. She earned her GED and went on to work at the same hospital where she gave birth to her children.  

There is no Republican candidate in the race and a potential independent candidate, Scott Wilson, is having petitions challenged by the Erie County Board of Elections. This gives Walton a clear path to victory in November’s general election, the Associated Press reported.  

RELATED: Kim Janey becomes Boston’s first Black, first woman mayor

Buffalo is the second-largest city in the state of New York. 47.1% of residents are white, while 36.5% are Black, 5.9% are Asian, and 12.3% are Hispanic, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. 

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