Court orders Rahm Emanuel’s name back on Chicago mayoral ballot

By Stephen C. Webster
Monday, January 24, 2011 13:23 EDT
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UPDATE: Illinois Supreme Court granted former Obama aide Rahm Emanuel’s motion for a stay of appellate court ruling.

Former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel will be included on upcoming ballots as a candidate for Mayor of the City of Chicago, The Chicago Sun-Times reported.

The Illinois Supreme Court has granted a motion for a stay of an appellate court ruling that found Emanuel was not eligible to run for mayor and ordered the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners not to print any ballots without his name.

The Supreme Court has not yet decided whether to grant Emanuel’s request to hear his appeal of the appellate court ruling.

Original story continues below…

An appellate court panel ruled by a vote of 2-1 on Monday that former Obama administration chief of staff Rahm Emanuel may not run for mayor of Chicago.

The high-powered Democrat, who was the leading fundraiser in the race, was not officially a resident of Chicago in time for the registration deadline, his opponents argued. In previous challenges to his candidacy, Emanuel convinced the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners and a judge in Cook County that he’d met residency requirements.

While Emanuel did own a home in Chicago, it was rented out to tenants who’d renewed their lease just days before outgoing Chicago Mayor Richard Daley said he would not seek reelection. When Rahm announced his intent to run, the couple said they wouldn’t be moving.

Emanuel, whose attorney called Monday’s decision “a surprise,” was likely to appeal the result to the Illinois Supreme Court, The Chicago Sun-Times reported.

State law requires mayoral candidates live in their city for at least one year before an election, although exceptions are made for military service. In a Dec. hearing, Emanuel’s service in the Obama administration was ruled to fit that exception of federal service, but Monday’s ruling disagreed.

Emanuel had previously served as a member of Congress from Chicago. The mayoral election was scheduled to take place on Feb. 22.

The complete Cook County circuit court ruling was available online (PDF).

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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