So Emanuel’s not running. What does that mean for me?

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Who’s running for mayor now?

At this point in the election cycle, we don’t have a finalized list of candidates yet — the deadline to throw your hat in the ring is Nov. 26, and candidates cannot file their nomination papers before Nov. 19. Here’s a list of everyone who has publicly announced they’re working to get their name on the ballot.

Could there be more mayoral candidates to come?

Absolutely. The news that Mayor Rahm Emanuel isn’t running for re-election is prompting many to speculate that new candidates will surface, and some familiar faces have already floated the idea themselves, like Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th), Ald. Ameya Pawar (47th) and Cook County Clerk David Orr.

To get on the ballot, a candidate needs to collect petitions with at least 12,500 valid signatures of Chicago voters by Nov. 26, according to the Chicago Board of Elections’ 2019 Election Information Pamphlet.

If you’ve signed a petition for a candidate already, you’re not allowed to sign another petition for a candidate running for the same office. If, for instance, you signed a petition for Lori Lightfoot, you shouldn’t sign one for Toni Preckwinkle if she decides to join the growing race.

Jim Allen, spokesman for the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners, said while people won’t get in trouble if they do sign multiple petitions, their signature could be the subject of another candidate’s objection later.

Allen said the office is “bracing for a large number of people filing for alderman, mayor and other offices” as well as a large number of objections. He advised anyone considering a run, or already running, to speak with an attorney “well versed” in election code before filing to avoid dealing with objections and other filing headaches.

What about all of Emanuel’s projects still in the works? Are they on or off?

We’ll have to wait and see. Some of the major efforts he’s championed recently include the fight to bring Amazon’s new headquarters, “HQ2,” to Chicago and an ambitious plan to build an express train from Block 37 to O’Hare in a partnership with Elon Musk — that’s still on by the way, according to a spokesman from the Boring Company. Chicago’s in a tight race to land Amazon, and recent speculation suggests the Washington, D.C., area might give us a run for our money.

What other big changes could Emaneul’s departure precipitate in Chicago?

The debate over an elected school board is ongoing, as is the city’s looming pension crisis. If those issues remain unresolved when Emanuel walks out the door, it will be left to the next mayor to present a plan to solve them.

What will happen to all the money Emanuel raised?

Now that he’s out, Emanuel said he plans to return the money — he had about $7.6 million in his war chest as of the last filing period.

Some of that money will go to staff and other expenses that still need to be paid now that the mayor is out the race.

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September 5, 2018 at 07:21PM

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