Two woman – both African Americans – have advanced to a off which will be held in April, for the right to become Chicago’s 45th mayor after coming out on top in Tuesday’s election.
With most precincts reporting, Lori Lightfoot, a former Chicago Police Board president and assistant United States Attorney, led the field of 14 candidates with 17.5 percent of the vote. Toni Preckwinkle, the president of the Cook County Board of Commissioners, was holding on to second place with 15.9 percent of the vote.
It’s only the second time Chicago has had a runoff campaign for mayor, which occurs when no candidate collects more than 50 percent of the vote in the first round.
In 2015, then-Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia forced Mayor Rahm Emanuel to a second round 2015, before the mayor went on to win handily.
Unofficial results showed Lightfoot with 17.5 percent of the vote, Preckwinkle with 16 percent and Bill Daley with 14.7 percent, with 96 percent of precincts counted. They were trailed by businessman Willie Wilson with 10 percent, state Comptroller Susana Mendoza with 9 percent, activist and policy consultant Amara Enyia with 8 percent, Southwest Side attorney Jerry Joyce with 7 percent and former CPS board President Gery Chico with 6 percent.
The remaining six candidates, former CPS CEO Paul Vallas, former police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, state Rep. La Shawn Ford, former Ald. Bob Fioretti, tech entrepreneur Neal Sales-Griffin and attorney John Kozlar, each collected less than 6 percent.
The winner would become Chicago’s second-ever woman mayor, its second-ever elected African American mayor and the first African American woman to serve as mayor.