Vox Pop: Mayoral election results


Midway Staff

In this Vox Pop, we ask students and faculty about their opinion on the results of Chicago’s mayoral election April 4.

After an exceptionally close race, Brandon Johnson won the Chicago mayoral election, which has brought out conflicting reactions in students. Chicago Public Schools, police funding, taxes and safety seem to be the main topics of discussion. Here’s what Lab community members thought of the outcome.

“I’m definitely hopeful for Johnson’s administration. I really like his policy on public schools, and not necessarily reforming that, but trying to improve things there because there’s a lot of work that needs to be done in Chicago public schools, and I didn’t necessarily agree with Vallas’ approach to just, like, making everything a charter school. I think while Johnson wasn’t super specific about his police reform, I’m also hopeful that he’ll take some serious steps to maybe not necessarily defund the police but try to reform that and make it so that communities feel safer with police presence in them.”

— Grayson Smith, 12th grade

“I think that the recent runoff election with Brandon Johnson and Paul Vallas really shows how extreme the Democratic party can be on different issues even though they’re part of the same party.”
— Mihir Epel, 10th grade

“I think that it’s great having a former educator running the city. Hopefully, he will put more emphasis on the CPS system and improve educational opportunities for students in Chicago.”

— Hayla Shah, 9th grade

“I am disappointed that Johnson won in the runoff election. … Johnson getting elected means even higher taxes for my family on top of the large amounts of taxes that we are already paying. A large portion of these taxes will likely be going to additionally fund CPS schools. While I certainly agree that these schools could benefit from more funding, I don’t think this additional funding will make much of, if any, difference in the quality and outcome of education received from the school.”

— Jack Colyer, 10th grade

“I’m very elated that Brandon Johnson was elected Chicago’s next mayor because I feel as though he is one of the few mayors the city has had in decades that truly derives from the community. He understands what the community context is because he has worked in public service jobs in the past and was a teacher.” 

— Katie Williams, 11th grade

“Personally, I think as a city we are moving in the wrong direction, especially after Lightfoot’s term, and Johnson’s election will only affirm this direction.”

— Oliver Wilson, 10th grade

“I’m happy that he won because I’m not old enough to vote, but I would have voted for him if I could. I agree with most of his policies and opinions. I really appreciate how much he values the education system in Chicago, given his education background, and I feel like it’s something that has been neglected a lot in the past, so I’m very excited for wherever that leads. And I was really hoping that Vallas would not be elected, so I’m also just glad about that.”

— Emma Ciesla, 11th grade

“Brandon Johnson is a good candidate for mayor, and I am certain that he will be able to mend some of the mistakes that our previous mayor may have made. Though I was surprised that Vallas did not win, I am happy because I agree with more of Johnson’s policies than Vallas, even though I can’t vote yet. I also find his connection to CPS interesting and I think that could do a lot to benefit our public school systems and some of the corruption that we see in it today.”
— Tara Sawhney, 11th grade

“I’m excited that Chicago took a chance on a candidate who is attempting to enact a lot of the progressive legislation that we’ve been yearning for, and I’m deeply interested to see what his take on addressing crime looks like.”

— Heavenly Hicks, High School Learning Coordinator