Ritchie Torres, an openly gay councilman from the Bronx, has declared victory in the race to replace outgoing U.S. Representative José E. Serrano, who announced last year that he was fighting a diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease and would not seek re-election.

While absentee ballots are still being counted, Torres has described his lead as “mathematically insurmountable.”

“UPDATE: The counting is all but over,” Torres wrote. “On Primary Day, we were ahead by 4516 votes. As of yesterday evening, our lead had grown to 7803 (far larger than the # of uncounted ballots). Even if our nearest rival were to win every single one, we would remain ahead by a wide margin.”

Going into the June 23rd primary, Ruben Díaz, Sr., who has represented the 18th Council District in the New York City Council since 2018, was leading in the 12-person race.

Díaz, a 77-year-old Pentecostal minister, is vocally opposed to LGBT rights. Last year, out Council Speaker Corey Johnson called for Díaz's resignation after he claimed that the Council was “controlled by the homosexual community.”

While Díaz has not conceded the race, he has said that he plans on retiring from politics.

In 2016, Torres was a delegate for the Bernie Sanders campaign.