Monday marked the deadline for candidates for mayor of Chicago to file their petitions, finalizing the paperwork needed to ensure their campaign.
The crowded field of candidates is expected to shrink by the time names reach the February ballot, with petition challenges likely. Still, with just minutes to the deadline, 18 candidates had already filed.
A number of candidates will also be in a lottery to have their names listed at the end of the ballot – long-considered a prime position. They include Comptroller Susana Mendoza, Amara Enyia, Ja’Mal Green, John Kozlar, Neal Sales Griffin and Lori Lightfoot.
Bill Daley filed with almost three times the signatures needed to get on the ballot, but he still called for reform in the process.
“The thought that people get in at different stages of this campaign, if you sign one petition you can’t sign another. That’s a little disingenuous considering we want more ballot access, we want more people involved in the process,” he said.
Gery Chico agreed.
“We should be able to get the people on the ballot that we’d like to see on the ballot without being limited to one signature,” he said. “This isn’t a vote.”
Many of the candidates say they have “nothing to worry about” as questions over challenges loom.
“I don’t fear the crowded field,” said LaShawn Ford. “I think the crowded field is what democracy is all about.”