May 20, 2024 9:00am

Serafin Power Poll: May Flowers, The Cicada Invasion, and AI

We asked members to weigh in on Mayor Johnson, the DNC, AI, a third airport, and the cicada invasion.

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By Thom Serafin
Chicago, IL Correspondent
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Serafin Power Poll members weighed in on Mayor Johnson’s one-year anniversary this month... And the results are disappointing for City Hall. We also asked Pollers about the upcoming Democratic National Convention (DNC) and we don’t think planners will like those numbers either. Find out more about those results along with insights on Artificial Intelligence (AI), a third airport, and the cicada invasion:

Mayor Johnson is marking his first year in office and we asked what Pollers thought of his performance. Sorry, Mayor Johnson, but an overwhelming majority (totaling 88%) said they were disappointed or very disappointed. Only 8% marked neutral, and just 3% said they were sort of impressed with Mayor Johnson. And, get this—a mere 1% said they were very impressed.

We’re less than three months away from the Democratic National Convention (DNC) and the city is preparing for a large influx of visitors along with protests and potentially debilitating traffic. A recent news report said the DNC is “preparing for the worst” at this summer’s convention. 37% of our Pollers said they were somewhat worried about it, and 33% said they are very worried about it. 10% said they are not worried at all. Making up the final tally, 20% cited they plan to leave town entirely to avoid the convention altogether.

Conversations continue in both Springfield and Washington, D.C. about developing a third airport in the south suburban area of Chicago, specifically to service cargo aircraft and drone fleets designed to deliver goods. There’s increased demand because of online shopping (how many of you are waiting for an Amazon delivery today?), infrastructure issues and the rise in technology. We asked Pollers if they thought a third airport was necessary. The results were almost even with 51% saying yes, an extra airport is needed to relieve O’Hare and Midway, and 49% said no, that money should be spent elsewhere.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is moving faster than the speed of light, bringing big changes to how we conduct both our personal and professional lives. 30% of our Pollers said they now use AI at home and work. 26% said they have implemented some AI into their business lives but not in their personal lives. 21% said they use it for personal business but not at the office. The remaining 23% answered, “What’s AI?” To that, we say get ready for the sea change!

Finally, the cicadas are coming. This historic event is heading our way in a few short weeks, and experts are telling people to prepare for huge infestation levels—the biggest since 2007! How do our Pollers feel about these loud bugs? The majority (58%) said they are indifferent and don’t expect the cicadas to make an impact on their lives. A quarter of our Pollers (25%) said they’re excited about the invasion frenzy, and 17% are grossed out and concerned the bugs will impact their outdoor plans.

The Birthday Party Project! | GivePulse

For this month’s poll, we are proud to support The Birthday Party Project. Across the country including Chicago, The Birthday Party Project and its volunteer Birthday Enthusiasts bring the magic of a birthday celebration to children living in shelters and safe houses to ensure everyone experiences joy for their special day. For more information on how you can get involved, visit

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About Power Poll: Power Poll asks questions of the most powerful, influential people in U.S. cities. It is not a scientific survey. But because the people responding to the surveys comprise the leadership structure of their cities, the results afford a fascinating glimpse into the thoughts, opinions, and beliefs of those in a position to make change. Power Poll is distinctly nonpartisan.

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