Lori Lightfoot, Chicago’s first black woman and openly gay mayor, on Tuesday became the first leader of the huge Midwestern city in 40 years not to win reelection, US media reported.
Lightfoot, criticized by rivals for rising crime rates in the city, admitted surprise defeat, telling supporters she was “rooting and praying for our next mayor to take care of the people of the city for years to come”.
Former Chicago public school principal Paul Vallas will now face Brandon Johnson, a Cook County Commissioner and former teacher, in a runoff on April 4, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Vallas has the backing of the local police union, while Johnson has the backing of the Chicago teachers’ union.
Lightfoot’s defeat was seen as a shock to the country’s third-largest city, which has been bringing mayors back to power for decades. She had won every ward in the city in 2019, but rising crime rates and the economic fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic had shaken her support.
“We know that in life you don’t always win the battle in the end. But you never regret going up against the mighty and bringing in the light,” she told a crowd of supporters.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is being published from a syndicated feed.)
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