Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel
Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel answers a question during an interview with the Associated Press in Chicago, Feb. 12, 2011. Photo by AP
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Rahm Emanuel, the former top aide to United States President Barack Obama, is making his final push to secure enough votes for an outright victory in Chicago's mayoral race.

Chicago voters go to the polls Tuesday with polls showing the 52- year-old Emanuel is the clear favorite to become mayor of Obama's hometown.

A Chicago Tribune survey in the last week showed Emanuel with 49 per cent of the vote, well above his closest rival, Gery Chico, who had 19 per cent in the six-person race.

Emanuel must capture at least 50 per cent of the vote to avoid a run-off election that would be held April 5.

Emanuel is vying to replace Richard Daley, who is not running after serving six terms in the post. Emanuel left his job as Obama's White House chief of staff in October.