“We didn’t lose today, we tried today,” mayoral challenger Jesus “Chuy” Garcia said as he conceded the race to incumbent Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Tuesday night.
With nearly all voting precincts reporting results, Emanuel won with approximately 56 percent of the vote compared to Garcia’s 44 percent.
Garcia began his speech by congratulating the incumbent mayor.
“I just spoke with Mayor Emanuel to congratulate him and I wished him and his family well,” Garcia said. “This was a hard fought race, but it’s over now.”
The defeated candidate went on to tell the story of his experience coming to Chicago as a child from Mexico nearly 50 years ago.
“The people of Chicago have made me who I am today," Garcia said. "We may have missed by a little, but you put me here tonight. All of you – I will not forget you.”
Garcia admired the turnout of Tuesday’s runoff election and displayed hope for a better future in the city.
“People from all over the city came together and spoke with one clear voice to say you want to be heard,” Garcia said. “You want a city that works for everyone – not just for downtown or the neighborhoods, but for both … No matter who is mayor, we must work together to solve [the city's problems].”