Mayoral campaigns battle over Rahm Emanuel's eligibility to run

November 17, 2010

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(WBEZ/file)
Rahm Emanuel greets CTA commuters in October.

There are lots of hairs being split Wednesday over Rahm Emanuel's eligibility to run for mayor of Chicago. Elections attorney Burt Odelson told the Chicago Tribune he has evidence the Chicago Board of Elections ruled Emanuel an inactive voter in 2009. Odelson is advising the campaign of mayoral hopeful State Senator James Meeks.

Odelson says Emanuel did not notify the Board of Elections of his address change when he moved to Washington D.C. to become the White House chief-of-staff.

Emanuel kept ownership of his North Side house. Emanuel's campaign responded Wednesday with its own elections expert, attorney Mike Kreloff. "All of this is just political games to try to infringe on a candidate's right to run for office," Kreloff said.

Illinois election code reads no one, "shall be deemed to have lost his or her residence" while being away on the business of the United States.

No official complaint against Emanuel's residency has been filed with the Board of Elections. November 30th is the deadline to submit that kind of complaint.