CHICAGO, Dec. 24 (UPI) -- Rahm Emanuel, former chief of staff to President Obama, says he can "turn the page" now that questions of his Illinois residency have been cleared.
Opponents of Emanuel's candidacy in the race to become Chicago's next mayor said he didn't meet residency requirements because he moved to Washington to become a member of Obama's administration, but Thursday the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners determined he does meet residency requirements, the Chicago Tribune reported.
"We can now turn the page to the phase that's now most important, which is attacking the issues the city faces," Emanuel said.
Also on Thursday, state Sen. James Meeks dropped out of the race. Meeks is also pastor of Chicago's Salem Baptist Church.
"As long as our community remains divided and splintered -- to the specific advantage of the front-running, status quo candidates -- we will never see things improve. We need to speak with one voice," Meeks said.
Meeks met with two other prominent black mayoral candidates Wednesday for what they said were efforts to unite behind one African-American candidate.
U.S. Rep. Danny Davis and former U.S. Sen. Carol Moseley Braun also attended the meeting.
"We weren't necessarily just trying to convince each other of who had the strongest candidacy," Davis said. "What we were doing is making the case in terms of the desirability of our candidacy and campaign."
The Chicago Sun-Times reported that Meeks said "our house is divided" with four black candidates in the race.