Pointing to Chicagoans' heightened interest in the mayoral election, Monday's first day of early voting set a record: the city's second-highest opening-day turnout.
According to the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners, the turnout is trumped only by early voting for the 2008 Presidential Election in which Barack Obama was a candidate. It garnered 11,749 votes on that first day.
On Monday, mayoral candidates Rahm Emanuel and Miguel del Valle were among 6,387 voters, according to unofficial numbers. Early voting continues through Feb. 17 at 51 polling places throughout the city. The General Election is Feb. 22.
Here are opening-day early voting stats since 2006, from the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners:
March 2006 - 683 (Mid-term primary)
Nov. 2006 - 890 (Mid-term general)
Feb. 2007 - 831 (Municipal General)
April 2007 - 537 (Aldermanic Run-offs)
Feb. 2008 - 3,988 (Presidential Primary)
Nov. 2008 - 11,749 (Presidential General Election)
Feb. 2010 - 2,035 (Mid-term primary)
Nov. 2010 - 412 (Mid-term General, when only three polling sites were open on Columbus Day)
Feb. 2011 - 6,387 (Municipal General)