By Adam Schalke
Rahm Emanuel’s current disapproval rate doesn’t look good for his campaigning future.
Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons
With Rahm Emanuel’s approval rating plummeting and his reelection prospects diminishing, there is widespread discussion about who will, or could, replace him.
While many students at Roosevelt and many citizens in Chicago feel that while the mayor should not be rewarded for his negligence with a second term in office, there needs to be an understanding of what is required in a mayor.
Being the mayor of Chicago is an exceedingly difficult job. Given the city’s ongoing crime issues, its poverty-stricken neighborhoods, and its negligible finances, all topped off with deep-seated ethical concerns regarding city officials and practices, being Chicago’s mayor is a job that is by no means recommended for anyone other than the most politically cunning individuals.
Despite the challenges that the job requires, and the gray hairs it creates, there are still many people who could be potential challengers to Rahm Emanuel in 2019, and who are all but guaranteed to do just as good a job as mayor, if not better, than the incumbent, given his abysmal record.
Perhaps the biggest name on the list of potential candidates is Chuy Garcia. For those who don’t remember, Garcia is a Cook County Commissioner who ran against Emanuel in 2015.
Although Garcia and other candidates managed to split the vote and deny Emanuel a majority of the city’s votes in the mayoral general election, he failed to defeat him in a runoff election a few weeks later. Despite his initial loss, he has maintained active in the press and has been a supporter of Bernie Sanders in his presidential run. He has not made it clear if he will run or not, but it is certainly not out of the question.
Other potential candidates include longtime Emanuel critics Karen Lewis and Toni Preckwinkle. Lewis is the president of the Chicago Public School System was seen as Emanuel’s most likely opponent back in 2015. Health concerns forced her to forgo a run, but there is a chance she may be back in 2019. Preckwinkle the Cook County Board President, and a long-time critic of Emanuel. Although she did not run in 2015, there’s definitely room for her to run in the future.
When asked about the hypotheticals of the election, political science professor Paul Green claimed that it is far too early to start making predictions.
“February 2019 is a very long way away”, Green said. “ That may as well be a lifetime away. We don’t even know if Rahm Emanuel will run for reelection three years from now, so it’s impossible to start predicting who would run against him. It’s just not possible.”
One thing is for sure; 2019 is bound to be a bumpy year in Chicago.