Young people — many of whom didn’t vote in the Chicago mayoral election last month — could play a significant role in the runoff.
Election board officials are basing this prediction on the number of mail-in ballots requested thus far for the runoff election April 2.
“The top age groups are 25 to 34 and 35 to 44, which was not the case in the February election,” Chicago Board of Election Commissioners Chairwoman Marisel A. Hernandez said Monday.
“These are the same age groups with the most voters in Chicago, and the same age groups who turned out in the November 2018 election.”
In the November election, which decided several congressional races and the state’s next governor, the two age groups had 54 percent and 59 percent voter turnout, respectively.
Three months later, Hernandez said, the groups accounted for the biggest drop in voter turnout for the mayoral contest. Just 21 percent and 31 percent of voters in those age groups cast ballots, respectively.
Now, it seems they’re interest could again be piqued, Hernandez said, noting that perhaps the crowded field of 14 mayoral candidates had deterred some from making up their minds.
“The time has come to shape and determine the future of our city,” Hernandez said, encouraging voters in all age groups to cast ballots.
Early voting for the mayoral runoff began Monday at polling places in all 50 wards. The Loop Super Site, 175 W. Washington St., opened Friday.
Runoffs are also being held in 15 Chicago aldermanic elections and in the race for city treasurer.
SUN-TIMES VOTING GUIDE: 2019 Chicago Mayoral and Aldermanic Election