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Michael Rodriguez Wins In 22nd Ward Race To Replace Outgoing Ricardo Muñoz

With 76 percent of precincts reporting, Rodriguez has captured 64 percent of the vote in the four-way race.

Michael Rodriguez, left, takes early lead in the race for 22nd Ward alderman. U.S. Rep. Jesus "Chuy" Garcia endorsed Rodriguez for the seat.
Michael Rodriguez/ Facebook
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LITTLE VILLAGE — Democratic committeeman Michael Rodriguez won the four-way race to replace embattled Ald. Ricardo Muñoz (22nd).

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, Rodriguez captured 64 percent of the vote, according to the Chicago Board of Elections. Richard Juarez trailed at 12.5 percent, Lisette Lopez received 13.8 percent and Neftalie Gonzalez received 9.8 percent of the vote.

Last summer, the race was left wide open after Muñoz announced he would not seek re-election.

RELATED: Who Will Be The Next Alderman Of The 22nd Ward?

Rodriguez, who previously worked as an executive officer of the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office, received early support from the outgoing alderman. He also worked as the executive director of Enlace, a nonprofit organization focused on education, health, immigration and violence prevention in Little Village.

“We had a very strong network of volunteers to make this campaign a success,” Rodriguez said Tuesday night. “We believe that our positive pro-working class message resonated with the 22nd Ward and are proud of our convincing victory.”

During his campaign, Rodriguez said he aimed to “improve the quality of life” for residents throughout the ward by working to address youth violence, building community assets and “investing in schools” to make them safe spaces that also serve as community centers.

Earlier this year, all of the 22nd Ward candidates called for Muñoz to resign after he was arrested after his wife said he hit her on New Year’s Eve.

RELATED: Ald. Ricardo Muñoz Arrested After Domestic Incident, Police Say

Muñoz, a leader in City’s Council’s Progressive Caucus, was first appointed to the 22nd Ward seat by then-Mayor Richard M. Daley in 1993 to replace Jesus “Chuy” Garcia after Garcia was elected to the State Senate.

The 22nd Ward includes all or parts of Little Village, Brighton Park and Lawndale.