We don’t like to do election predictions here at the Chicago Tribune. Our job is to report the news and get you what you need to know about the issues facing the city and the politicians dancing around them.
But with two weeks to go until Election Day, it’s remarkable just how wide open the race for Chicago mayor is. There are nine candidates fighting for the two spots in the expected April 4 runoff and at least four of them — Mayor Lightfoot, former Chicago Public Schools CEO Paul Vallas, Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson and U.S. Rep. Jesús “Chuy” García — have a strong shot. All four are leading in terms of campaign cash as well as some of the most recent polling.
Still, you can’t count out businessman Willie Wilson, Ald. Sophia King, or state Rep. Kambium “Kam” Buckner, as those candidates are either spending chunks of money (Wilson and King) or impressing residents who watch the debates (Buckner). Community activist Ja’Mal Green and Ald. Roderick Sawyer are also running.
Underscoring the changing dynamics: Mayor Lightfoot has gone from ignoring Johnson to attacking him at every turn, including a packed rally over the weekend. We are in full swing and here’s the latest as we enter what will likely be a crazed final stretch. Keep reading, keep writing and, especially now that early voting is available in all 50 wards, don’t forget to vote!
Here’s what we’re watching and what you need to know. If you were forwarded this email, click here to get Daywatch and the Afternoon Briefing delivered to your inbox every weekday. Sign up to get our alerts on all your devices.
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The last televised Chicago mayoral forum featured a series of explosive exchanges as candidates differed over taxes, policing and even questioned whether their challengers care about Black people.
As Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot campaigned on the West Side, she focused her attacks on Brandon Johnson, the Cook County commissioner representing that area. The mayor’s appearance highlighted a subtle shift in her campaign strategy as the candidates enter the last two weeks before the Feb. 28 election.
Millions of dollars have been poured into Chicago’s mayoral race, and less than a month out from the Feb. 28 Election Day, contributions are still streaming in. See the latest campaign finances records for each candidate.
Early voting is underway. Here’s a look at the nine candidates, one of whom will be running Chicago come spring.
To inform voters and to help the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board make endorsements, the board posed a series of questions to the candidates running for aldermanic seats.