Rahm Emanuel elected Chicago mayor - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Rahm Emanuel elected Chicago mayor

Source: The Associated Press Source: The Associated Press

CHICAGO (RNN) - Former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel has been elected mayor of Chicago.

With 88 percent of precincts reporting, Emanuel has 55 percent of the vote. In second place, Gery Chico has a little over 24 percent of the vote.

Emanuel beat six opponents in all, allowing him to avoid a runoff.

Shortly after the race was called, Emanuel tweeted "Thank you Chicago! Your hard work & support got us here. Looking forward to working together as your next mayor."

Emanuel left his position in the White House in October to run for the top job in his hometown.

In his concession speech, Chico encouraged his supporters to give their backing to the new mayor.

"I pledged to mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel my full support for whatever he needs to take our city in the direction he will take it," he said. "I want with all of my heart for Rahm Emanuel to be successful as our mayor."

Taking the podium for his victory speech, Emanuel thanked his supporters for a "humbling victory."  

"All I can say is, you sure know how to make a guy feel at home," he said to a rousing chorus of cheers. "Tonight, we are moving forward in the only way we truly can - together as one city with one future."

Emanuel is the first new mayor in Chicago in more than 21 years, replacing retiring mayor Richard Daley. Emanuel noted that the "city bears his imprint and he has earned a special place in our hearts and our history."

"Rich Daley is the only mayor a whole generation of Chicagoans have known," he said.

Emanuel pledged to tackle the city's challenges, laying out an agenda focused on bettering education, creating jobs and eliminating crime.

"We have not won anything until a kid can go to school and focus on their studies and not their safety. Until the parent of that child is thinking about their work and not where they're going to find work, we have not won anything," he said.

"The real work for building a better future begins tonight."

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