Chicago fires its mayor | Richard Hétu’s blog

The voters of Chicago, the third American city, inflicted a resounding snub on Tuesday on their mayor, Lori Lightfoot, by firing her after only one term. They expressed their deep dissatisfaction with Lightfoot’s handling of crime, an endemic problem that has worsened over the past four years.

The first black and homosexual woman to lead the Windy City, Lightfood did not even manage to qualify for the second round of the municipal election. She finished third among nine candidates with 17.06 percent of the vote, behind former Chicago Public Schools CEO Paul Vallas and Cook County Commissioner and Chicago Teachers’ Union organizer Brandon Johnson.

The second round will therefore pit Vallas, who won 33.77% of the vote, against Johnson, who won 20.29%. The first presents himself as the candidate of the law, while the second is not sure if he wants to fill the vacant positions within the Chicago police department. Former Barack Obama strategist David Axelrod, who spent his adult life in Chicago, spoke of a struggle between “the police union candidate” and “the teachers union candidate”, the two each representing a different generation.

“Public safety is the basic right of every American. It is a civil right, and it is the main responsibility of the government. We will have a safe Chicago. We will make Chicago the safest city in America,” Vallas said late in the evening.

Little known to the general public before the start of his mayoral campaign, Johnson edged out Lightfoot by garnering a good portion of the votes from black voters who were seeking an alternative to mayor.

“They said it would never happen. I’m so proud because we made it. A few months ago they said they didn’t know who I was. Well, if you didn’t know, now you do,” he said, quoting the late rapper Biggie Smalls. “We have changed the political dynamics of this city. »

And to add: “Tonight, it’s about building a Chicago that really invests in its citizens. The most radical thing we can do as a city is love the people of Chicago. Loving people and investing in people – that’s how my dad raised me. The finances of this city belong to the people of the city. So let’s invest in the people of the city. »

The second round will take place on April 4.

(Photos Chicago Sun-Times and Chalk Beat)


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