Yusef Salaam wins Democratic primary to represent Harlem on NYC Council!

New York, New York - Yusef Salaam, an exonerated member of the Central Park Five, has officially won his Democratic primary for New York City Council!

Yusef Salaam, a member of the Exonerated Five, is the official Democratic nominee to represent Central Harlem on the New York City Council.
Yusef Salaam, a member of the Exonerated Five, is the official Democratic nominee to represent Central Harlem on the New York City Council.  © Collage: Dave Kotinsky / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP & Dia Dipasupil / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

Salaam declared victory in his quest for the Central Harlem City Council seat last week with just over 50% of the vote, but the race was not called at the time.

Votes tallied on Wednesday clearly put Salaam over the top, with around 63.8% going to the political newcomer.

With his primary win, Salaam defeated two experienced politicians, New York State Assemblymembers Inez Dickens and Al Taylor. Incumbent Councilmember Kristin Richardson Jordan also appeared on the ballot despite dropping out of the race in May.

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"We are going to have a New Harlem Renaissance," the victor tweeted as the results were announced.

Yusef Salaam's difficult journey to politics

Salaam was one of five Black and brown youth convicted of raping a 28-year-old white woman out for a jog in Central Park on April 19, 1989. He was just 15 years old at the time of his arrest.

The Central Park Five spent between five and 12 years behind bars before a serial rapist confessed to the crime and DNA evidence proved their innocence. Former President Donald Trump infamously placed ads in four newspapers in 1989 calling for their execution.

The special general election for the Central Harlem seat is set for November. Salaam is expected to prevail in the heavily blue district.

Cover photo: Collage: Dave Kotinsky / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP & Dia Dipasupil / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

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