Controversial Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is getting some prime-time spotlight for taking on the president over immigration. The mayor, who is a political street-fighter and longtime Democratic powerbroker, sued the Justice Department this week over the president’s efforts to stop “sanctuary” cities from defying federal officials. Emanuel has been a hot ticket on the TV circuit where he has both built his case and criticized the president.
“Chicago will not be blackmailed into changing our values,” Emanuel said when announcing the suit.
Going after Trump is most likely a good move for Emanuel. His approval rating plummeted after the 2014 shooting of an unarmed teen by Chicago police, the inability to deal with the sky-high murder rate in the city and a budget crisis. Chicago voted against Trump by a massive 53-point margin in the 2016 election. The national showdown with the President may be Emanuel’s ticket to reelection in 2019.
This no-hold-bars feud is the kind that both men seem to love, and neither is going to pull punches. Trump said off-the-cuff recently in an Ohio speech, “What the hell is going on in Chicago? Better tell that mayor to get tough because it’s not working what they’re doing.” In June Trump threatened to send federal officers to the city because of the local failure to control the crime “epidemic.”
The Chicago Sun-Times cited anonymous White House sources and reported that Trump likes to single out Chicago for criticism because he enjoys getting a rise out of Emanuel.
In June, Emanuel said Trump’s political strategy boiled down to keeping his conservative base “on amphetamines — highly charged.” He also stated that it was his brain, not the president’s brawn that would solve Chicago’s crime issues.
“[It’s] not about being tough but being smart and strategic,” he said.
Mayor Emanuel defended his lawsuit against the government by saying that sanctuary laws are needed to make sure there is cooperation between local police and community residents who might stay silent because of fear of deportation.
“We want residents to see the police department as partners in making their neighborhoods safe,” Emanuel told CNN on Monday. “It’s a false choice. And, I’ve said before, we will never be coerced on our values. Whether you cross the Atlantic, the Pacific or the Rio [Grande] … to make your way to Chicago, we welcome you here,” Emanuel told CNN. “That is the culture of this city.”
Attorney General Jeff Sessions wasted no time lashing back, accusing Emanuel of running “a city that refuses to help its own residents.”
“To a degree perhaps unsurpassed by any other jurisdiction, the political leadership of Chicago has chosen deliberately and intentionally to adopt a policy that obstructs this country’s lawful immigration system,” Sessions said.
The fight between these two is a “fun” spectacle to watch, however, these two fighting is really hurting Americans, and specifically the people of Chicago. With the President not willing to work with Sanctuary Cities to come to a compromise he withholds funds to law enforcement. The result is the lack of funds cripples law enforcement to be able to protect their community. Rahm’s failure to work with the President does likewise crippling his own people.
As usual partisan politics only does one thing, put the American people in the crosshairs. Maybe one day we can learn to work together…sign…but, today is not that day.
Credit: The Hill