Emanuel wins reelection for mayor

Andrew Hwang, Staff Writer

Photo courtesy of Carol Jarzyna on 123rf.com
Photo courtesy of Carol Jarzyna on 123rf.com

Rahm Emanuel is once again the Chicago mayor for the next four years after the first mayoral runoff in Chicago on April 7. It was a race between the Emanuel and Jesus “Chuy” Garcia.

Before becoming mayor, Emanuel was President Barack Obama’s Chief of Staff but decided to resign in 2011 to run for his current position. Though his eligibility to run was initially rejected, he was found eligible by the Supreme Court of Illinois. Emanuel won with 55 percent of the votes over five other candidates.

Garcia was the first Mexican-American in the Illinois State Senate. In the February 2015 mayoral primary, Garcia received 34 percent of the votes, finishing second behind Emanuel. However, Emanuel was unable to win the required 50 percent of votes needed to win the mayoral election forcing the two candidates into a runoff, another round of voting with the two most popular candidates.

The platform Emanuel ran on included his policy on higher education reform. Senior John Park supports Emanuel’s policy to make college free for several students.

“Emanuel really won my support and many others because of his well-proposed plan to make community college free for those who have a satisfactory grade point average,” Park said. “ I feel that it is a very good step in reducing amount of crime through education.”

The mayor had a twelve to one fundraising advantage over Garcia. Emanuel had nearly $23 million compared to Garcia’s $6 million. Garcia had not announced a financial plan to fight Chicago’s worsening finances and Emanuel ran campaign ads exposing Garcia’s lack of a financial strategy. Sophomore Chirag Naga believe that these ads helped Emanuel to victory.

“I completely supported Garcia until I heard about his lack of a financial plan in Emanuel’s commercial advertisements,” Naga said. “It helped inform people like me about his opponent.”

English teacher Steven Cavalieri believe voters should be more informed about their candidates in order to make the best choice.

“It is probably easier to those who don’t follow politics as much to vote for a candidate that have similar characteristics to themselves such as race,” Cavalieri said. “However, those who are well-educated and informed about their choices would most likely take into consideration the benefits these candidates would bring to our city.”