Chicago Mayoral Election 2023: Brandon Johnson is the New Mayor

Chicago Mayoral Election 2023 Result: Brandon Johnson leads.

VotesVote Share
Brandon Johnson286,64751.4%
Paul Vallas270,77548.6%

Chicago Mayor Polls 2023 (Average): Paul Vallas: 46.6% Brandon Johnson: 43.3% Undecided: 10%

Latest Chicago Mayoral Election Poll: Paul Vallas: 49.6% Brandon Johnson: 45.4% Undecided: 5%

Google Search TrendsPaul Vallas: 51%, Brandon Johnson: 49%

Eleven candidates were on the ballot on February 28th voting including the incumbent Lori Lightfoot. Lightfoot was elected mayor in 2019. Lightfoot won 17.5% of votes amongst the 14 candidates contesting for the general election In the April 2 runoff election, she defeated Toni Preckwinkle 74% to 26%. The February 28th voting resulted in a defeat for the incumbent for the first time in over 3 decades. Paul Vallas received the maximum votes with Brandon Johnson in 2nd position.

The runoff election is scheduled for April 4th.

Chicago Mayoral Polls 2023: Who are the Candidates for the Runoff?

Paul Vallas

Paul Vallas, a former superintendent of the Chicago Public Schools, is known for his crisis management skills and support for charter schools. During his time in Chicago, he reformed the school system, balanced the budget, and expanded alternative schools. However, his proposal to reallocate funds for teacher pensions into the operating budget led to a $1 billion budget crisis. Vallas has a history of bipartisan support and experience running for statewide office.

Brandon Johnson

Brandon Johnson is a Democratic politician and educator from Illinois who currently serves on the Cook County Board of Commissioners, representing the 1st district. Johnson defeated the incumbent commissioner Richard Boykin in the 2018 Democratic primary election and won the general election unopposed. Johnson worked as a social studies teacher before becoming an organizer with the Chicago Teachers Union in 2011 and helped lead field campaigns during the 2015 Chicago mayoral and aldermanic elections.

Chicago Mayoral Race Polls: Who is Winning the Chicago Mayoral Race?

  • Opinion Polls – Vallas
  • Google Search Trends – Tied but trending towards Vallas
  • Social Media Sentiment – Johnson

Chicago Mayor Polls: Observations and Insights

  • Even after Garcia threw his weight behind Johnson’s campaign, 35.5% of those who voted for him in February plan to vote for Vallas in the runoff contest while a majority (64.7%) of those who voted for Ja’Mal Green last time said they will vote for Johnson now. 
  • So far, Lori Lightfoot has held neutral ground in the runoff, but her supporters are clearly breaking in one direction. A majority (57.1%) of those who voted for the outgoing mayor back Brandon Johnson in the runoff. while the other 24.4% say they’ll vote for Vallas. 
  • Johnson leads heavily in Chicago Southside while Vallas leads heavily in the Southwest and Northwest wards.
  • In many ways, Vallas is mimicking a Republican candidate’s voter profile. Vallas leads among moderate and conservative voters while trailing among progressive voters.
  • Vallas seems to have a clear advantage with the most sought-after Latino constituency, with support among 57% of Latino voters compared to 30.3% backing Johnson.
  • White voters overwhelmingly chose Vallas over Johnson, 59.9% to 32.3%, while African Americans backed Johnson 55.4% to 24.6%.  
  • Polls suggest a stark gender divide among voters. Male likely voters surveyed back Vallas over Johnson, 52.1% to 38.7% while both Vallas and Johnson are running nearly even among women voters — 42.7% back Johnson and 41.2%.
  • CSDD surveyed about important characteristics in supporting a candidate for mayor. For voters overall, the top two characteristics were being progressive and fighting for progressive issues (37%) and the experience as an elected official (36%).
  • Vallas is now under fire for his comments about the former president’s impeachment in a new Johnson ad. “I always felt that it was a witch hunt,”

What are the Main Issues for Upcoming Mayoral Race?

70% of likely voters say Chicago is on the wrong track, while 6/10 voters (61%) feel that crime instances have increased in the city of Chicago today than there was a year ago, while barely 8% feel there is less crime.  

A majority of those surveyed (52%) say crime is the most important issue in determining their vote, followed by education, (11%), taxes (9%) and housing (7%).   

When asked who they trust more to handle the following issues:

  1. Crime
    • Johnson: 38%
    • Vallas: 54%
    • Neutral: 9%
  2. Education-
    • Johnson: 41%
    • Vallas: 48%
    • Neutral: 11%
  3. City’s Finances-
    • Johnson: 37%
    • Vallas: 50%
Chicago Mayoral Debate Recap
Less than two weeks away from the run-off election and both the candidates clashed for a Televised debate on Tuesday to discuss the major issues facing the city of Chicago

1. Defunding the police: Johnson when asked about his plans to ask if he would remove money from the Chicago Police budget, cleared that he doesn’t plan to do that. Johnson went on to reiterate his plan to hire 200 more police detectives so as to improve the clearance rate for crimes, focus on implementing the federal consent decree that mandates reform in the Chicago Police Department, and focus on long-term solutions to deal with the root causes of crime by focusing on issues such as youth employment.

2. City budget, taxes, and pension: Vallas proposed $800 million in tax increases, including a potential income tax increase. Vallas mentions that” tackling the $28 billion spending that the city does every year is the first order of business and not tax increases.” Vallas also added he has “no intention of raising property taxes,” but he plans on advocating for “individual property tax caps on homeowners, as well as businesses and apartment owners.” Johnson claimed that he is going to plug the structural deficit without raising the property tax rates.

3. Education: Johnson proposed implementing a new funding formula when elected. According to him, it’s a new funding formula that bases the investment on the need & provides additional support and resources to the families that deserve it. Vallas promised that he will work to create work-study jobs for the high school kids, with all of the city agencies, departments, contractors, and unions, who will engage and involve youth in work-study opportunities.

Chicago Mayor Polls 2023: Latest Polls

Average of PollsApril 5th
Victory ResearchMarch 31- April 2
EmersonMarch 23-25
BSP ResearchMarch 20-23

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Chicago Mayor Election Odds

The bookmakers are in for a close fight between Vallas and Brandon Johnson. The latest Chicago Mayor election odds are:

Smarkets (Odds):

  • Paul Vallas: 1.00001
  • Brandon Johnson: 2.0

Chicago Mayor Polls: Google Search Data

Last 7 days

  • Paul Vallas: 49%
  • Brandon Johnson: 51%

Last 30 days

  • Paul Vallas: 53%
  • Brandon Johnson: 47%

Chicago Mayoral Polls: Social Media Sentiments

Last 7 days (Illinois)

  • Vallas: -30%
  • Johnson: -18%

Latest Tweets

Chicago Mayor Election Polls 2023: Endorsements

Paul Vallas

  • Alds. Brian Hopkins, Anthony Napolitano, Tom Tunney
  • Chicago Chapter FOP, International Union of Elevator Constructors Local 2,
  • Chicago Tribune, Gazette Chicago  

Chuy Garcia

  • Alds. Felix Cardona Jr., Michael Rodriguez, Susan Sadlowski-Garza, Andre Vasquez, Gilbert Villegas
  • State Sen. Ram Villivalam
  • US Rep. Jan Schakowsky
  • Illinois House Democratic Leader Robyn Gabel

Chicago Mayor Polls: Demographic Profile of Chicago

Chicago is a city in the state of Illinois and falls under Cook County. The population of Chicago was 2.7 M in 2015 and in the last 7 years, no increase in the population has been registered in Chicago.

Chicago has more women population than men and as of July 2021, the white population in Chicago is around 48%. The black population adds up to 29% of the population and Hispanics or Latinos together form 28.6% of the total population.

Population Estimates, July 1 20212,696,555
Persons under 5 years6.1%
Persons under 18 years20.5%
Persons 65 years and over12.7%
Female Population51.4%
White alone47.7%
Black or African Americans alone29.2%
American Indians and Alaska Natives alone0.3%
Asian alone6.8%
Two or More Races5.3%
Hispanic or Latino28.6%
White alone, not Hispanic or Latino33.3%

Chicago Mayoral Polls: Election Process

The election in Chicago is a non-partisan election but most of the time a candidate is backed by a political party. Chicago is generally considered a Democratic Party-dominated region.

The term limit for the office of the Mayor in Chicago is 4 years. The candidate’s name before being listed on the ballot will have to get a minimum of 12,500 signatures from the Chicago voters within the prescribed date.

This year in Chicago the date for getting the 12,500 signatures has been fixed between November 21 to 28th. Candidates failing to get the required number of signatures are disqualified.

The names of the candidates with more than 12,500 signatures are listed on the ballot. On the voting date, voters cast their vote, and the winner is declared on the same day or the next day of the voting.

For a candidate to be declared winner will have to get a minimum of 50% vote share. Since the Chicago Mayoral election has been usually crowded, there have been very rare chances of a candidate receiving a 50% or higher share of votes.

If none of the candidates secures a majority, a run-off election is held. The top two candidates from the Primary election qualify for the run-off ballots. Since there are only two candidates, a winner is declared after the voting and counting is completed for the run-off election.

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