UPDATED 10 A.M. WEDNESDAY | With 100% of the vote in, At-Large City Councilwoman Rita Ali and current 4th District Councilman Jim Montelongo are the two Peoria mayoral candidates advancing to appear on the April 6 general election ballot.
Ali led the whole way as primary results came in Tuesday night, earning a solid 38% of the vote among a field of five candidates on the ballot and another three write-ins.
"We're very excited. Citizens are engaged, and we've built a very strong, diverse coalition, and it's based upon progress, and new vision and change," Ali said. "And people are excited. And I'm very excited."
Montelongo had just under 24% of the vote. At-Large City Councilman Sid Ruckriegel came in third, with 18.7% of the vote.
"We're very excited, our family and our campaign team," Montelongo said. "The people of Peoria heard my message and it was well-received, and so we're very happy with those results."
Ali said she hopes her message will continue to resonate with voters.
"We plan to work very hard over the next six weeks and then we hope to win the election," said Ali, adding she expects both sides to run a clean campaign focused on the issues. "Then that's when the hardest work comes: governing and leading."
Montelongo said he intends to continue his campaign's methods leading up to the general election.
"What's always worked well for me, certainly, is getting the message out to people's mailboxes, but more importantly to the doorstep -- me knocking on doors and talking to people, letting them know what my past performance is and what I intend to do for the city," said Montelongo.
Neither Chama St. Louis or Andres Diaz broke into the double digits tonight. St. Louis garnered just over 9% of the vote, while Diaz had 8.8%.
"I am proud of the power that we built together and humbled by the community of supporters who worked so hard to build a movement that transcends this moment -- a movement that will bring accountability to our city," said St. Louis in a statement.
"Thank you friends for all the love, support, and prayers. I ran a clean campaign and stayed positive, on message, and will continue to be an active part of our community," said Diaz in a statement.
The Democratic primary for Peoria Township Supervisor is still too close to call. Challenger LaTrina Leary leads incumbent Frank Abdnour by just one vote, 3,054 to 3,053.
Voter turnout was 16.2%, or 11,923 people. It was 9.48% in the 2017 primaries, the last Peoria mayoral primary. Incumbent Jim Ardis chose not to seek a fifth term.
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