A quarter of its members will be new. Four members will be openly gay, the most ever. The Republican minority, though still tiny, will grow to five from three. For the first time, a majority will be black, Hispanic or Asian. Also for the first time, an Asian-American will represent Chinatown.
The slim margin by which Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg was re-elected was the biggest surprise on Tuesday night. But in curb-level races in far corners of the city, changes took place that amounted to a remaking of the New York City Council, an often-docile body that gained 13 new members — the most since 2001 — and is likely to take on a far more combative role in governing the city, and scrutinizing the Bloomberg administration.
High rents and tenants’ rights, in addition to a clash with the Mayor on education, seem likely on a Council marked by significantly more racial and ideological diversity.