UPDATED: 7:25 p.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) — The majority of polls across Chicago are closed and the votes are now being counted to determine the next mayor of Chicago as well as 18 races for alderman.

The election is the first mayoral runoff since Chicago began using nonpartisan elections in the race for mayor in 1995. Mayor Rahm Emanuel is facing off against Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia.

With 62.01 percent of precincts reporting, Mayor Emanuel leads Garcia 56.25 percent to 43.75 percent.

Both candidates for mayor have campaigned rigorously for several months.

As voters headed to the polls, Emanuel officially started making his rounds at 10 a.m., when he helped man phones at a Bronzeville campaign office, encouraging potential voters to get out to the polls.

“To quote a famous organizer by the name of Marsha Emanuel, my mother, just when you think you’ve made your last phone call, you’ve got 10 more. Just when you think you’ve knocked on the last door, go across the street, you knock on 10 more doors. Okay? Because this future, the children of the city of Chicago, are worth fighting for,” he said.

Emanuel thanked his campaign volunteers for their hard work and dedication in preparation for the runoff.

Meantime, Garcia had breakfast Cozy Corner Restaurant & Pancake House in Edison Park with Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd), after greeting commuters at the nearby Jefferson Park stop on the CTA Blue Line. He rubbed the nose of the Thomas Jefferson statue for good luck

He later headed to the Merchandise Mart stop on the Brown Line to shake hands with potential supporters.

Even with polls showing he’s trailing Emanuel by double digits, Garcia said he’s confident he’ll win.

“It’s anybody’s guess, but we’re going to be out there knocking every door, ringing every phone, and sending every social media message that we can to come out and vote,” he said. “We think this is a tight race. We think the field will decide it, and that’s why we’re confident that tonight we’re going to have a great victory party.”

Garcia has said polls underestimate the vote from Latinos, African-Americans, and young voters.

Emanuel enjoyed a substantial financial edge over his opponent, outspending Garcia $17 million to $2.3 million.

As of 7 p.m., Chicago Board of Elections officials estimate turnout to be 40 percent higher than the February election, which was at roughly 34 percent.

Approximately 175,000 Chicago voters had cast ballots during early voting or by mail, the most ever for a municipal election.

Most voters in Chicago said casting their ballot was a quick process, being that there are only one or two races in which to vote.

It was mostly smooth sailing for Chicago polling places, with very few problems. Several precincts that opened late will remain open until 8 p.m. Those precincts are:

1st Ward, 17th precinct at 1847 N. Kedzie

1st Ward, 37th precinct at 525 North Armour St.

41st Ward, 3rd and 12th precincts, both located at 5115 N. Mont Clare Ave.

42nd Ward, 18th precinct at 300 North Canal St.

46th Ward, 8th precinct at 4640 North Sheridan Rd.

Investigators were sent to a home that functions as a polling place where an inflatable Uncle Sam had a poster with a Rahm Emanuel poster was positioned in front. Election officials ordered the poster removed and the homeowner agreed.

An inflatable Uncle Sam with "Vote For Rahm" written on it outside a home that functions as a polling place. (Credit: CBS)

An inflatable Uncle Sam with “Vote For Rahm” written on it outside a home that functions as a polling place. (Credit: CBS)

In one precinct in the 44th Ward, voters could not use the voting machines, because an election judge apparently did not know how to use them. So voters cast paper ballots by hand instead, and their votes were counted. An investigator for the Board of Election Commissioners was able to clear up the problem, and get the voting machines working later Tuesday morning.

Voters who think they have seen any improper activity at a polling place, they should call the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners’ election hotline: 312-269-7870.