Why Chicago may never have another black mayor


It is quite possible that Chicago will not have another African-American mayor. Not in the near future, anyway.

The ever-growing slate of candidates seeking to succeed Mayor Rahm Emanuel is the most diverse this city has ever seen in terms of ethnic makeup, gender and age. That’s a good thing when it comes to giving everybody a voice. But it’s a disaster when you need a coalition to win.

As it stands now, 16 people are in the race, and the list seems to keep growing by the day. Some of them are folks most Chicagoans had never heard of until recently. Eight of the contenders are African-American. A ninth African-American dropped out this week because he couldn’t get enough signatures.

Chicago mayor’s race: Who is in, who is out and who is still thinking about it »

On top of all of this, Chicago has lost more than 180,000 African-Americans since 2000, according to census data.

None of this bodes well for the African-American candidates already in the race. But who knows? Someone we least expect might be out there gathering last-minute signatures to jump in.


Twitter @dahleeng

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November 15, 2018 at 05:09AM

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