Trump Administration Feud with Chicago Escalates
Throughout his campaign, President Trump made a point of repeatedly using Chicago as being emblematic of many of the woes facing the country.
Then-candidate Trump once pondered on Twitter whether “Chicago is more dangerous than Afghanistan,” comparing the city to a “war-torn country,” and citing varying numbers of people killed due to gun violence during Obama’s time in office. Perhaps most notably, he once tweeted, “If Chicago doesn't fix the horrible carnage going on…I will send in the Feds!”
This week, the back-and-forth between the Trump administration and the city continued, following Chicago’s decision to file a lawsuit, after Attorney General Jeff Sessions threatened to withhold the main source of federal law enforcement funding provided to cities if cities didn’t adequately revise their so-called “sanctuary city” policies.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel said of the Department of Justice’s new policy proposal, “Chicago will not be blackmailed into changing our values, and we are and will remain a welcoming city. The federal government should be working with cities to provide necessary resources to improve public safety, not concocting new schemes to reduce our crime-fighting resources.”
Monday, Sessions responded to the lawsuit, saying, “This administration is committed to the rule of law and to enforcing the laws established by Congress. 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.”
Much of the contention stems from Chicago’s 2006 Welcoming City ordinance, which, ABC News notes, “limits city officials' ability to inquire about a person's immigration status during unrelated business” and “prevents federal immigration officers from using local resources except for ‘a legitimate law enforcement purpose that is unrelated to the enforcement of a civil immigration law.’” Proponents of the measure claim that, aside from being inclusive, the ordinance keeps the community safer, with witnesses to crimes more willing to discuss what they know if they do not face a fear of deportation for coming forward.
It remains unclear whether Chicago’s lawsuit will be successful, but following President Trump’s April decision to issue an executive order in which he said sanctuary cities would be “"ineligible to receive federal grants," a California federal judge granted a preliminary injunction to stop the order from going into effect.
Posted in The Takedown