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Just 4 votes separating Ald. Roderick Sawyer from runoff

Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th) | Sun-Times file photo

As more mail-in ballots from Tuesday’s election are counted, Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th) has seen his already tenuous lead shrink even more.

Records from the Chicago Board of Elections show that, as of Friday, Sawyer — son of former Mayor Eugene Sawyer and head of the council’s Black Caucus — was holding onto 50.02 percent of the vote in the 6th Ward aldermanic race.

The combined tally of his two opponents — Richard Wooten and Deborah Foster-Bonner — was just four votes fewer than Sawyer’s 5,020 votes. Foster-Bonner was in second place, with more than 31 percent of the vote.

It was unclear if mail-in ballots from the ward were still being counted Friday and a spokesman for the Board of Elections did not respond to a clarification request Friday evening. A Sawyer campaign representative did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

As long as mail-in ballots were postmarked by Tuesday, the board is required to count any that arrive right up until March 12.

Runoffs are needed when no candidate wins a majority in the first round, pitting a race’s top two vote-getters in an April 2 grudge match.

Wednesday, Sawyer’s lead sat at 17 votes. Alds. George Cardenas (12th) and Roberto Maldonado (26th) also saw leads of 120 votes or fewer.

Ten incumbent aldermen were forced into runoffs after Tuesday’s election. Three aldermen — Joe Moore (49th), Proco “Joe” Moreno (1st) and John Arena (45th) — were given the boot by their constituents.

Incumbent Ald. Roderick T. Sawyer (6th) and challenger Richard A. Wooten (left) met with the Sun-Times Editorial Board in January. | Rich Hein/Sun-Times
Incumbent Ald. Roderick T. Sawyer (6th) and challenger Richard A. Wooten (left) met with the Sun-Times Editorial Board in January. | Rich Hein/Sun-Times