Both Chicago and Denver vote in mayoral elections next Tuesday, April 4. Chicago makes a final decision after the incumbent, Lori Lightfoot, lost the first election. Polls show a close race between Paul Vallas, former school executive, and Brandon Johnson, teachers’ union leader. Each is drawing from racial, ethnic and political interest groups around the city with the police union facing off with the teachers union. Not surprising, crime and education are the top issues for voters.
Johnson was more than ten percent behind Vallas in the first round, but has closed the gap with a host of union endorsements and rallying much of the progress wing of the electorate including Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.
The Denver election represents the first round with a field of 16 active candidates (17 on the ballot). There has been a dearth of polling but, a one month-old poll and financial reports appear to present a rough lineup as follows:
|Kelly Brough||Chamber executive ($790,000)|
|Mike Johnson||Nonprofit executive ($581,000)|
|Leslie Herod||Progressive legislator ($609,000)|
|Lisa Calderon||Progressive activist, ran 4 years ago ($127,000)|
|Chris Hansen||Liberal legislator ($490,000)|
|Debbie Ortega||Incumbent councilperson ($254,000)|
|(expenditure as of 3-14)|
Other than multi-candidate debates, rolling into the last week has produced a flood of advertising but not much news.
There is one Republican in the field, Andy Rougeot, who is spending his own money ($752,000) and will take votes from other candidate but not shown up in the few polls.
Turnout has been lower than 4 years ago at this point, possibly reflecting no personality has captured public attention or conversation in the mass of candidates. For what has been described as a critical election for Denver, not much interest is visible.READ:
Chicago Latinos tilting toward Paul Vallas in mayor's race, poll shows
Denver Election: Ballots Drop; Where’s the Race?