Crime and Safety

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s fate in question after voting closes

As the polls close in the Chicago mayoral race, Laurie Lightfoot looks destined to become the first incumbent mayor of the Windy City to lose re-election in 40 years.

Lightfoot’s outlook looked bleak ahead of Tuesday’s presidential race as the Democratic mayor trailed several candidates in the polls.

A poll conducted by Victory Research just days before the election ranked Lightfoot third with just 18.7% of the vote, behind former Chicago Public Schools head Paul Wallace (26.8%) and Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson (20.2). %).

Wallas’ lead over Lightfoot is widening, with his total votes up nearly 5 percentage points since the last tally by Victory Research.

The M3 Strategies poll released last week also showed Wallas in the lead, but by a wide margin, with 32% support, much more than Lightfoot’s 13.6%.

If no candidate wins 50% of the vote in Tuesday’s election, the top two leaders will face off in a second round of elections on April 4.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s fate in question after voting closes
Mayor Lori Lightfoot could become the first sitting Chicago mayor to lose re-election in 40 years.
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In a race where crime and public safety have become major concerns for voters, Lightfoot has faced harsh criticism for the rampant crime that plagued Chicago during her tenure, as well as bringing race into elections and saying that voters who do not support her should not appear in the elections.

Under Lightfoot, Chicago had 695 homicides at the end of 2022 and 804 in 2021, a level not seen in the Windy City in a quarter of a century.

In addition, according to the Chicago Police Department’s year-end report, there were more than 20,000 theft incidents in the city in 2022, almost double the number in 2021.

Lightfoot argued that critics of her four-year tenure simply didn’t want to see a “black woman” run the New Yorker Saturday.

“I’m a black woman – let’s not forget,” she told the publication. “Frankly, some people don’t support us in leadership positions.”

The 60-year-old mayor is the first black woman and the first openly lesbian mayor of Chicago.

“The very forces that didn’t want Harold Washington to succeed are still here,” she told The New Yorker, referring to the Democrat who was elected in 1983. “The last time we had an African American mayor was 40 years ago. It is important for us not to repeat history.”

Woman voting in city mayoral elections
A woman votes in Chicago’s mayoral election on Tuesday.
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Lightfoot made the announcement despite the fact that eight of the nine mayoral candidates on Tuesday were people of color.

Lightfoot, 60, told South Chicago voters earlier this month that they shouldn’t vote at all unless they vote for her re-election, but later insisted she misspoke.

The mayor said voting for “someone not called Lightfoot is voting for Chewie Garcia or Paul Wallas,” referring to her rivals.

“If you want them to control your destiny and your destiny, then stay at home,” Lightfoot continued. Then don’t vote.

She later told reporters that she did not want to suggest that voters not participate in the elections.

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