Former Transit Chief Joe Lhota Wins New York City Republican Mayoral Primary

   on September 10 2013 11:29 PM
Lhota, Joe
New York City Republican mayoral candidate Joe Lhota exits the polling center after voting in the Republican primary election in the Brooklyn borough of New York on Sept. 10, 2013. Reuters/Brendan McDermid

Joe Lhota has defeated John Catsimatidis to become the Republican Party nominee for New York City mayor.

Lhota, who was a deputy mayor under Rudolph Giuliani, had 52 percent of the vote with 81 percent of precincts reporting Tuesday night, according to EyeWitness News 7. Catsimatidis, a billionaire grocery store magnate, had 41 percent, and George McDonald, head of a nonprofit to help the homeless, had 7 percent, the news channel reported.

While deputy mayor, Lhota, a former head of the Metropolitan Transit Authority, was praised for steering the MTA through the catastrophic Superstorm Sandy. Lhota led the polls throughout the campaign. He will face the Democratic nominee on Nov. 5. The candidates are vying to replace Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who will leave office after serving 12 years as NYC mayor.

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