Chicago among 4 of 15 largest cities unable to recall mayor

Chicago among 4 of 15 largest cities unable to recall mayor

One Chicago resident is petitioning to give people the power to recall Chicago’s mayor. He needs more than 56,000 fellow voters to agree before it can be placed on the November ballot.

Chicagoans could eventually have the power to recall Mayor Brandon Johnson or future mayors if resident Dan Boland succeeds in his effort to give city voters that power.

“Recall This Fall” needs 56,464 signatures by Aug. 5 before Chicago voters could decide its fate on the November ballot. The petition itself wouldn’t recall Johnson, whose approaching one full year in office on May 15, but it would give Chicagoans the power to do so.

Among the nation’s 15 largest cities, Chicago is one of four without the power to recall the mayor. In Illinois, only the governor is subject to recall procedures.

Johnson brushed off the idea of Boland’s petition getting traction.

"It's some dude from the suburbs who is mad about the diversity and formation in which we have put forward," Johnson said. "Apparently the extreme right wing in this country, they are not very pleased with the fact that 60% of my administration are women, 43% of those who make up my administration are Black."

Boland said he’s lived in the city for 33 years. He took Johnson’s “suburbs” remark as an insult.

An Illinois Policy Institute poll found only 29% of surveyed voters approved of Johnson’s job performance, with to 57% disapproving as of January 2024. State Rep. LaShawn Ford, D-Chicago, introduced a similar measure for recalls back in 2015 when Rahm Emanuel was mayor.

If the petition gets on the ballot and receives a thumbs-up from voters, a recall could occur during the March 2026 election.

Want more? Get stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.

Thank you, we'll keep you informed!