Rahm Emanuel, Chicago mayor and long-time Democratic powerbroker, has filed a lawsuit against the justice Department this week. Rahm is arguing that the Trump administration is trying to rein in sanctuary cities such as Chicago. Well, no duh!
“Chicago will not be blackmailed into changing our values,” Rahm Emanuel declared, as he announced the lawsuit against the Justice Department.
Commentators believe that this very public lawsuit is a cynical bid by Rahm Emanuel to strengthen his position for the upcoming elections. Due to the rampant violence across the city of Chicago, and recent police shootings, Rahm Emanuel’s position as mayor is very tenuous. However, Eric Oliver, an expert in the politics of race at the University of Chicago, believes that the mayor’s gambit will pay off.
Oliver believes President Trump is hated much more than Emanuel and thus, starting a feud with him could help Emanuel regain popularity. “The only two people more disliked in Chicago than Rahm are [Illinois GOP Gov.] Bruce Rauner and Donald Trump,” Oliver stated.
“Trump hasn’t done anything to bring the violence rate down,” he added, “so he hasn’t exactly won many supporters since taking office.”
Emanuel reiterated that it was important to welcome immigrants that “believe in the American dream. He stated, “We want you to come to Chicago if you believe in the American dream,”
“By forcing us, or the police department, to choose between the values of the city and the philosophy of the police department, in community policing, I think it’s a false choice and it undermines our actual safety agenda,” he added.
“Whether you cross the Atlantic, the Pacific or the Rio [Grande] … to make your way to Chicago, we welcome you here,” Emanuel declared during the unveiling of his lawsuit against the Justice Department.
Emanuel argued that sanctuary laws promote a sense of cooperation between the people and the police and would reduce the fear amongst citizens of being deported in the even that they voice their concerns to police authorities.
“We want residents to see the police department as partners in making their neighborhoods safe,” Emanuel mentioned to CNN. “It’s a false choice. And, I’ve said before, we will never be coerced on our values.”
The lawsuit presented by Emanuel argues that the federal government can’t unilaterally set conditions that are not approved by Congress, “and that would federalize local jails and police stations, mandate warrantless detentions in order to investigate for federal civil infractions, sow fear in local immigrant communities, and ultimately make the people of Chicago less safe.”
In an announcement which provoked Emanuel’s lawsuit, Attorney General Jeff Sessions argued that the mayor of Chicago is running “a city that refuses to help its own residents.”
The bottom line is this, Sessions declared, “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.”