The Gateway Unpacks: How Omaha elections work

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Anton Johnson
COLUMNIST
The Gateway Unpacks is a column that seeks to make political news, both local and national, accessible to anybody.

Omaha holds its citywide primary elections next Tuesday, with the general election on May 11. Graphic by Kylie Squiers/The Gateway.

Omaha will hold its citywide primary election on April 6. Keep reading for more information on voting, the mayoral candidates and the city council.

Voting information

            Voting begins at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday. You can find your polling location here. At the polling place, you’ll sign-in and receive your ballot. You’ll fill out and return it to the poll workers.

Ballot request cards were sent to all registered Omaha voters who might choose to vote early by mail. Early in-person voting at the Election Commission is also available through Monday at 5:00 p.m., and voters can have someone pick up their ballot for them.

All ballots must be received by 8:00 p.m. Tuesday. The deadline to register to vote and to request a mail-in ballot for the primary election was Friday, Mar. 26. The deadline for the general election will be Friday, April 30.

 

Mayoral race

Candidates:

  • Jean Stothert, Omaha’s first female mayor, in office since 2013, running for a third term
  • Jasmine Harris, director of public policy and advocacy at RISE, a nonprofit that helps prepare incarcerated people for reentry
  • J. Neary, chairman of Investors Realty Inc., a commercial real estate and property management company
  • Kimara Snipes, President of the South Omaha Neighborhood Alliance (SONA) and Omaha Public Schools Board member
  • Mark Gudgel, teacher at Omaha North High School

All five candidates will be on the ballot Tuesday, and the top two will go on to face each other in the general election in May. Omaha elections are officially non-partisan, so their party affiliations will not be on the ballot. But, the top two will most likely be the Republican Stothert and one of the four Democratic candidates.

 

City Council:

All seven seats in the Omaha City Council are up for grabs. Same as the mayoral race, the top two primary finishers in each of Omaha’s seven districts will then face each other in the general.

Six of the seven city council members will run for reelection, as Omaha City Council President Chris Jerram, representing District 3, won’t seek a fourth term. City Council member Colleen Brennan, who represents District 5, was appointed to her seat this year, after former member Rich Pahls was elected to the Nebraska Legislature.

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