Chicago Mayoral Candidate Wins Another Round

January 04, 2011

According to a Cook County circuit judge, Rahm Emanuel is a Chicago resident and can run for mayor of the city.

Emanuel’s residency has been challenged since he entered the Chicago mayoral race considering he was in Washington one year ago being President Barack Obama’s Chief of Staff. By law, you must be a resident of Chicago for at least one year before an election.

Rahm with his hand on his chin.

Rahm Emanuel is said to have a 20 percent lead in the race for mayor of Chicago.

Last week, the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners voted that Emanuel is indeed a resident of Chicago and can run for mayor, considering he still owns a house here, pays property taxes here and votes here.

Opponents took their fight to court, but today Cook County Judge Mark J. Ballard ruled that Rahm Emanuel is eligible to stay on the February 22 Chicago mayoral ballot.

The judge wrote that Emanuel’s residency is covered by the election code that “protects the residential status of Illinois citizens who serve the national government.”

So it’s over right? Of course not. Attorney Burt Odelson, who represents the challengers, has said he would take the case to the Illinois Appellate Court. Then, if the opponents still don’t get the answer they seek, a trip to the Illinois Supreme Court could be in order.

But for now, Emanuel can focus on the issues.

“The Board of Elections and the court have both now concluded what I have said all along — that the only reason I left town was to serve President Obama and that I always intended to return,” said Emanuel.

“Now that these decisions have been reached, Chicago voters should have the right to decide the election and to vote for me or against me. And they deserve to have the campaign focus on the challenges facing the city and the need for safe streets, strong schools, and stable city finances.”

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[…] Obama needed a new chief of staff after his original one — Rahm Emanuel, also a Chicago resident — left the post last year to go run for mayor of […]

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