2018 Illinois Election: Fritz Kaegi wins Cook County assessor primary, Joe Berrios concedes

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Incumbant Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios has conceded the primary election race to Fritz Kaegi. (WLS)

Fritz Kaegi won the Democratic primary for the Cook County Assessor's Office, defeating Joe Berrios, the current assessor.

With 96.7 percent of precincts reporting Tuesday night, Kaegi had 306,886 votes to Berrios' 229,431 votes. Andrea Raila had 139,144 votes.

Berrios called Kaegi to offer his congratulations and conceded the Cook County Assessor's primary race.

Cook County voters decided Tuesday to unseat Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios, who has faced criticism over the tax assessment system.

Fritz Kaegi and Andrea Railia challenged Berrios in the primary election.

Berrios is chairman of the Cook County Democratic Party and long-time machine politician.

Kaegi has worked as a financial manager for Columbia Wanger Asset Management, and Railia is a tax consultant.
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Long-time Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios faces two challengers.

The Cook County Assessor's Office is tasked with assessing the estimated market value of properties, which largely determines property tax bills.

Fritz Kaegi


Earlier Tuesday, Raila called for an investigation, and possibly a special election, after some election officials were instructed to pass out notices to voters that she was not on the ballot.

Last week, an appellate court put her back on the ballot after she was knocked off for fraudulent petitions. Tuesday, Raila accused Cook County and Chicago election boards for failing to tell election judges she is back on the ballot.

"Why were these allowed to go out into 3,000 polling areas? Why did the Board of Elections, at 6 a.m., tell their judges to pass them out?" Raila said.

"I went to the voting booth this morning and they were in every single voting booth," said voter Bill Dolan of the notices.

Andrea Raila

In addition to the notices to voters, Raila had copies of text messages that instructed judge to pass out them out.

The Chicago Board of Elections acknowledged the green notices were placed in election judge packets before the appellate court ruling and a pre-programmed text message was sent by accident. Election officials said they tried to fix the situation quickly.

"We took every effort we could to make sure the notices had stopped," said Jim Allen, a spokesman for the Chicago Board of Election.

Allen admitted that the situation is not fair, but the election will go on and that the candidates would have to take legal action in the future if they would like to challenge the results.

Joe Berrios

Related Topics:
politicscook countyproperty taxeselectionChicagoLoopCook County
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