Chicago mayoral race: Lottery held to determine order for candidates challenging Mayor Lightfoot

Ja'Mal Green claims top spot, followed by Sophia King, Kam Buckner, Willie Wilson , Brandon Johnson and Paul Vallas

ByCraig Wall and ABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Wednesday, December 7, 2022
Lottery held to determine ballot order in Chicago mayoral election
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The Chicago mayoral election ballot order was determined by a lottery Tuesday, with candidate Ja'Mal Green landing the top spot.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The ballots for the municipal election are now taking shape. This morning the Chicago Board of Elections conducted the lottery for the top spots.

Of course the biggest race is for mayor, but some pending petition challenges could shake things up.

The political wheel of ballot fortune spun favorably for the candidate with ball #6: Ja'Mal Green.

"It means a lot when you have a crowded field, right?" Green said. "You know a lot of people who see all these names in the race, the first name that they see, you know, is going to help a lot."

The current ballot order is:

Ja'Mal Green

Sophia King

Kam Buckner

Willie Wilson

Brandon Johnson

Paul Vallas

Lori Lightfoot

Frederick Collins

Johnny Logalbo

Roderick Sawyer

Jesus "Chuy"Garcia

"Sounds like he committed fraud in Ja'Mal's filings to me," said Ricky Hendon, a political consultant to Willie Wilson, as he showed reporters some of Green's petitions. Hendon is challenging Green's signatures and if he's successful and gets Green knocked off, then there would be a new king of the ballot.

"I'm No. 2 and things can happen," candidate Sophia King said, "and you can move up to No. 1, so I'm excited."

Garcia, who by default won the last spot on the ballot, had another big win on Tuesday: a $1 million union donation to bolster his campaign, putting the other candidates on notice.

"We're north of $2 million and then we've got commitments for much more," candidate Paul Vallas said. "So, I'm very confident that we're definitely going to have the money."

"This has always been a people-driven campaign, we've been able to get our message out, we'll continue to do that and I think the contributions will begin flowing as well," candidate Kam Buckner said.

Wilson, who is self-funding his campaign, is also among those facing a petition challenge brought by Green.

"I hope you saw today that we got the first spot on the ballot," Green was heard telling a donor during a fundraising call from his campaign office.

Wilson dismissed both Green's petition challenge and the ballot positions.

"Well, I think my name is already out there, and people are going to search for who they want to vote for," Wilson said.

Hearings on petition challenges are set to begin next Monday and will be scheduled over the coming weeks. The Chicago Board of Elections is hoping to have them all finished and have the ballots finalized by the first week of January, pending any court challenges.