Lori Lightfoot Is Chicago's First Gay, African-American Woman Mayor

Saul Bowman
April 6, 2019

In a historic first, a gay African American woman was elected mayor of America's third largest city Tuesday, as Chicago voters entrusted a political novice with tackling hard problems of economic inequality and gun violence.

Lightfoot, who also will be Chicago's first openly gay mayor, won Tuesday's runoff election against Cook County Board president and county Democratic Party leader Toni Preckwinkle. A city where it doesn't matter what colour you are.

There has been a long-standing issues when it comes to corruption, class and race that has plagued the city of Chicago for many years prior, and Lightfoot claims to make changes to fix those issues.

The officer who fired the fatal shots, Jason Van Dyke, had already been convicted, but the three other officers were cleared of any wrongdoing in January - a stunning blow to McDonald's family and civil rights advocates across the country. "They're watching us. And they're seeing the beginning of something, well, a little bit different", she said. Harold Washington was the first black mayor elected in 1983 and re-elected 1987 but died in office later that year.

"Together, we finally can put the interests of our people- all of our people- over the interests of a powerful few", Lightfoot said at her victory press conference after garnering about 74 percent of the vote, according to the Associated Press.

"They're seeing a city reborn".

"Now that it's over I know that we will work together for the city that we both love", she added. We've been discriminated against.

Lightfoot added, "Breaking the back of the Chicago machine, it's quite monumental".

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