2021 Syracuse Mayoral Primary Election Coverage : Who Will Face the Incumbent? Who Will Face Incumbent Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh?

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) — Primary day has arrived in central New York and candidates are competing for their party’s nomination to run for mayor of Syracuse in the general election in November.

There are two Republicans and two Democrats on the ballot for the mayor of Syracuse.

Syracuse Common Councilors Khalid Bey and Michael Greene are competing for the Democratic nomination, and on the Republican side it is Janet Burman against Thomas Babilon.

The winners of Tuesday’s mayoral primaries will face Mayor Ben Walsh. But the big question is — will the candidates who make it to the general election ballot beat the odds of defeating an incumbent. 

Mayor Ben Walsh comes from a line of Syracuse politicians. He was elected in 2017 making him the first independent mayor of Syracuse in more than 100 years. He is seeking re-election for a second term in office.

Historically, incumbents are difficult to unseat from top positions in central New York so NCC News reached out to the candidates to find out their thoughts of facing an incumbent. 

“Trying to unseat an incumbent is difficult, so if you have an incumbent that has a respectable performance record they will be difficult to unseat. We have an incumbent who hasn’t done as much work,” said Khalid Bey. 

Republican candidate Janet Burman had a similar take. 

”I have decided his leadership is failing. Many citizens believe that as well. I want to present myself as a more effective leader for our city,” Burman said. 

While Babilon and Greene were not available for comment,  according to their official websites, they are focusing on specific policies  that are important to Syracuse voters like public safety and housing. 

NCC News also reached out to the incumbent. He was not available for comment due to being in Albany, but it seems he is comfortable that he will take the seat again. 

Voting polls around Syracuse close at 9 p.m. and we will then learn who will be advancing to run against Mayor Walsh. 

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