In Chicago elections, candidates can be declared the winner only if they receive a majority of the votes cast—that means they have to get 50 percent plus one vote to win the election.
If a candidate fails to meet that bar in the first election round then the highest two vote-getters meet again for a “supplementary” election, or run-off.
That “50-percent-plus-one” bar was hard to meet this time around. Almost 250 people ran to fill only 53 slots: Mayor, City Clerk, City Treasurer and 50 Aldermen.
In the mayoral and aldermanic races, the lack of incumbents drew scads of candidates.
The Mayor’s race—which for the first time in decades does not include incumbent Mayor Richard M. Daley—attracted six hopefuls. In the end, Rahm Emanuel defeated his five competitors with almost 55 percent of the vote, winning the race out-right.
And in the eight aldermanic wards with no elected incumbent (wards 4, 38, 41, 43, 45, 46, 47, and 48) the races for City Council were also competitive.
Indeed, the aldermanic vacancies created opportunity for political novices and party favorites alike to throw their hats into the ring, each one reducing the likelihood that any other would break the 50-percent-plus-one threshold needed to claim victory.
An incumbent Alderman doesn’t always equate to an outright win on Election Day. Some wards had a few strong challengers running against a sitting alderman. That meant the vote was more divided on Election Day, making it difficult for anyone to win out-right.
As of 9 a.m., the following 14 city council seats are undecided and will go on to the run-off. We’ve listed the two remaining candidates you will have to choose from on April 5. Newly elected officials will be sworn in May 16.
Not sure if you live in a ward listed below? Click here to find out which ward you live in.
6 FREDDRENNA M. LYLE RODERICK T. SAWYER
15 TONI L. FOULKES RAYMOND A. LOPEZ
16 JOANN THOMPSON HAL E. BASKIN
17 LATASHA R. THOMAS DAVID H. MOORE
20 WILLIE B. COCHRAN CHE ”RHYMEFEST” SMITH
24 SHARON DENISE DIXON MICHAEL D. CHANDLER
25 DANIEL ”DANNY” SOLIS CUAHUTÉMOC MORFÍN
36 JOHN A. RICE NICHOLAS SPOSATO
38 TIMOTHY M. CULLERTON TOM CARAVETTE
41 MARY O’CONNOR MAURITA E. GAVIN
43 MICHELE SMITH TIM EGAN
45 JOHN GARRIDO JOHN ARENA
46 MARY ANNE ”MOLLY” PHELAN JAMES CAPPLEMAN
50 BERNARD L. STONE DEBRA L. SILVERSTEIN