In a hard-fought runoff election, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel was returned to office for a second term, despite concerns over gang violence that spiked during his first tenure and a tense relationship with labor unions.
Emanuel, former chief of staff for President Obama and Illinois congressman, defeated Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia with 55.7 percent of the unofficial vote, reports the Chicago Tribune.
The win came after Emanuel failed to garner a majority of votes in the first-round of the February contest, forcing Chicago’s first runoff mayoral contest.
From the Chicago Tribune:
“To all the voters, I want to thank you for putting me through my paces,” Emanuel said after springing to the stage as U2’s “Beautiful Day” blared at the plumbers union hall. “I will be a better mayor because of that. I will carry your voices, your concerns into … the mayor’s office.”
In a message that played well with people of color, Garcia and progressive groups had accused Emanuel of putting Chicago’s corporate interests ahead of the working people.
But after spending weeks courting the city’s black voters, Garcia had trouble connecting well enough to make a difference. Emanuel held a lead in all of the city’s 18 African-American-majority wards and in all but one of the majority-white wards.
We hope Emanuel was sincere when he said “every voice counts.” He cannot continue to put corporate interests ahead of those of working people and minorities.
SOURCE: Chicago Tribune | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty