Chicago Residents Ready for Change

February 01, 2011

Early voting began Monday in the Chicago mayoral race, and many Chicago residents took advantage.

Election day is February 22, but registered voters can vote early through February 17.

Two of the mayoral candidates were among 6,367 Chicago residents that came out to vote on the first day of early voting.

Rahm Emanuel voted in the Austin neighborhood at the West Chicago Library and Miguel del Valle cast his ballot in Logan Square.

Each candidate voted for himself.

The amount of residents that turned out on Monday way exceeded the 831 residents that came out on the first day of early voting for the last mayoral race four years ago.

You don’t need a reason to vote early, just know that once you cast your ballot, there’s no going back.

If you are not yet registered to vote, there is a “grace period.” Through February 15, residents can register to vote, update their address or file a name change, but it must be done in person and then you must vote right then and there. Bring two forms of identification, including one that shows your current address.

To take advantage of Grace Period Registration and Voting, go to Chicago Election Board, 69 W. Washington St., 6th Floor, Chicago. The office will be open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Registered voters can cast ballots at any of the city’s 51 early voting sites.

“That means you may use the Early Voting site that is most convenient for you if you live in one part of Chicago and work, go to school or run errands in another,” said Chicago Board of Elections Chairman Langdon Neal.

To see a complete lists of locations, visit chicagoelections.com or call (312) 269-7900.

Chicago’s mayoral candidates:

*Former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel

*City Clerk Miguel del Valle

*Former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley Braun

*Former Chicago Board of Education President Gery Chico

*Community activist Patricia Van Pelt-Watkins

*Community activist William “Dock” Walls

By the way, if you are going to vote on Wednesday, February 3, the only site that will be open will be the Election Board Offices, which we mentioned earlier.

All other early voting sites in Chicago’s wards will be closed due to the storm heading our way.

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