Tags: Rahm Emanuel | Jesus Garcia | Chicago | mayor | dead heat

Poll: Chicago Mayoral Race Remains a Dead Heat

Image: Poll: Chicago Mayoral Race Remains a Dead Heat
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, left, and Jesus "Chuy" Garcia. (Scott Olson/Getty Images; Brian Kersey/UPI/Landov)

By    |   Monday, 09 Mar 2015 02:56 PM

The highly-contested and heated race between Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and challenger, Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, remains in a virtual dead heat, according to a new poll.

According to the weekly poll conducted by Ogden & Fry, Emanuel leads Garcia by 43.5 percent to 38 percent, while 18 percent of respondents said they remain undecided.

After one week of campaigning, Emanuel has increased his support by less than one percent from the firm's Feb. 28 poll which gave the incumbent a 42.9 percent to 38.5 percent advantage over Garcia. In that poll 18.6 percent were undecided.

In the Feb. 24 election, the former Obama administration aide failed to garner the 50 percent of the vote needed to prevent a runoff election. Emanuel won 45 percent of the vote and Garcia, who is the Cook County commissioner, came in second with 34 percent of voters, according to The Chicago Tribune.

The new one-question poll has a margin of error of 3.13 percent.

The large number of undecided voters does not work in Emanuel's favor because that segment usually does not break for a known incumbent, according to the firm's poll analysis.

The Emanuel campaign chose to respond to the new polls by staying on message and touting the mayor's record.

"When Rahm Emanuel took over four years ago, Chicago faced a $600 million deficit, companies and jobs were fleeing, and unfunded pensions threatened to bankrupt the city. Since then, Rahm balanced the budget for four straight years, personally recruited companies like Google and GE Transportation, and Chicago now leads all cities in job growth and as a place to invest," said a statement from Emanuel campaign spokesman Steve Mayberry, according to The Chicago Sun-Times.

Seeking to gain any leverage before the runoff election, Emanuel held a Sunday news conference to unveil plans to remove 50 red-light cameras located at 25 separate intersections throughout the city, according to The Chicago Sun-Times.

Emanuel also disclosed plans to expedite the timetable for installation of countdown signals at those intersections that do not currently have them in order, the paper notes, "to restore public confidence in the $70-million-a-year program."

With the African-American vote likely to play a key role in determining the victor, Garcia received a boost over the weekend when Rep. Danny Davis formally endorsed him, according to Garcia's campaign.

Emanuel received approximately 59 percent of the predominantly black wards in 2011, but only won 42 percent in the last election, according to Illinois Election Data cited by Reuters.

Garcia won 26 percent of the back vote, but the real fight will be over the remaining 32 percent, which was apportioned between the other candidates.

It was reported today by the Chicago Tribune that The Barack Obama Foundation, which was scheduled to announce the site of the president's future presidential library after the Chicago City Council voted on March 18 to permit the transfer of park land for use by the Foundation, has delayed its decision until after the April 7 runoff to avoid the appearance of showing an unfair advantage to Emanuel.

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The highly-contested and heated race between Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and challenger, Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, remains in a virtual dead heat, according to a new poll.
Rahm Emanuel, Jesus Garcia, Chicago, mayor, dead heat
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2015-56-09
Monday, 09 Mar 2015 02:56 PM
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