Rahm Emanuel is a former White House chief of staff – for Chicago\’s adopted favorite son Barack Obama. He is a four term congressperson. And he is a Democrat Mayor of Chicago who has Mr. Obama\’s blessing
So how could he possibly be forced into a primary runoff?
By being insufficiently progressive enough and insufficiently obsequious enough to the teachers union to get a majority of Democrat votes, that\’s how.
Jesus “Chuy” Garcia, who was a household name – in the Garcia household that is, and not very many other places – will compete with Emanuel in a runoff election on April 7th.
How vulnerable is Mayor Emanuel? Personally, I think that if the Chicago Teachers Union\’s President, Karen Lewis, had not dropped out of the race due to a cancerous brain tumor (I wish her a full recovery, of course), she would be the nominee this morning.
How viable is Garcia\’s candidacy? Well, he got 34% of the vote, while Emanuel – a universally-known incumbent who outspent him by 10 to 1 – got just 45%. The runoff will be a two-person race, and Garcia will have far more name recognition than he did in the primary; maybe a lot more money too. That makes him a serious threat to win.
And let\’s remember that, in Chicago, winning the Democrat nomination for Mayor is tantamount to winning the Mayoralty. The last time a Republican won anything significant in Chicago, Methusaleh was breast-feeding.
The runoff will be held on April 7th – just six weeks from now. What an interesting six weeks they will be.