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Mayor Rahm

Emanuel seizes majority of Chicago vote to avoid runoff

Marc Tracy
February 23, 2011
Where have I seen that font before?(John Gress/Getty Images)
Where have I seen that font before?(John Gress/Getty Images)

As @MayorEmanuel, an unusually hilarious fake Twitter feed, put it last night: “FIFTY FOUR MOTHERFUCKING PERCENT.” Actually, former White House chief-of-staff Rahm Emanuel received more like 55 percent of yesterday’s vote; but the crucial threshold for the heavy favorite was 50 percent, which he cleared, thus avoiding a run-off. The man who once dreamed of being the first Jewish Speaker of the House will instead be the first Jewish mayor of America’s third-largest, and spiritually Second, city.

If you want a retrospective of the campaign from that particular angle, you can find Rachel Shteir’s dispatches in Tablet Magazine—including her early prediction, which we are all pleased to see disproved, that Chicago would not elect a Jewish mayor—here. Famously, Jewish candidate Bernard Epton, lost in a close 1983 race in which Jewish voters actually helped swing the election to Harold Washington—who was, after all, like Emanuel, a Democrat.

Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.

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