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“This is a pretty huge lead in what is seemingly a pretty strong pack,” said Jessica Levinson, a director at the nonpartisan Center for Government Studies in Los Angeles. “The Obama administration isn’t so popular right now, but Rahm’s still known as a get-things-done guy.”

Ms. Levinson added that the controversy over Mr. Emanuel’s eligibility to run may have “only served to add to his name recognition. This isn’t about a DUI, it’s about the residency status of guy who went to Washington to serve his country.”

A previous Chicago Retail Merchants Association poll released last month put Mr. Emanuel in the lead with 39 percent, followed by Mrs. Moseley Braun with 12 percent and Mr. Chico at 9 percent. The number of undecided voters was 19 percent, which suggests Mr. Emanuel is winning the battle for voters still considering whom they will support.

But his rivals are not ready to concede the race.

Gery Chico is still in this race,” said Brooke Anderson, spokeswoman for Mr. Chico, also a former Daley staffer. “Rahm Emanuel is a celebrity in this town. How much higher can his numbers go? He’s spent more than $1 million on TV advertising, and we haven’t spent a dime. Gery Chico’s name recognition will increase.”