After President Donald Trump criticized Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson during a speech in the city, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said she is standing by her top cop.
"President Trump knows as much about policing as he does running a fair and transparent government," she tweeted Monday afternoon, shortly after Trump's speech at the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in Chicago.
Johnson, who is hosting the conference that Trump addressed, previously said he would not attend the speech because he thought the "values of the people of Chicago are more important" than what Trump would say.
Trump took notice and addressed Johnson's absence within the first few minutes of his speech.
"There is one person that's not here today. We're in Chicago," Trump said, after thanking several members of the IACP and the crowd. "I said, 'Where is he? I wanna talk to him.'"
"In fact, more than anyone else, this person should be here because maybe he could learn something," Trump said Monday, reading back part of Johnson's statement on values.
"Here's a man that could not bother to show up for a meeting of police chiefs, most respected people in the country, in his hometown, and with the president of the United States," Trump continued. "And you know why? It's because he's not doing his job," Trump said. "Last year, 565 people were murdered in Chicago. Since Eddie Johnson has been police chief, more than 1,500 people have been murdered in Chicago and 13,067 people have been shot."
Trump claimed that Chicago has the "toughest gun laws" in the country, asking, "That doesn't seem to be working too well, does it?"
Trump then called Chicago the "worst sanctuary city in America," saying the city "protects criminals at a level few could even imagine."
"People like Johnson put criminals and illegal aliens before the citizens of Chicago, and those are his values and frankly those values to me are a disgrace," Trump said.
"I want Eddie Johnson to change his values, and change them fast," Trump said. He then called Chicago's violence "embarrassing to us as a nation."
Johnson said the "national narrative that Chicago is a city on fire is just simply not true."
"Facts matter," he said, touting three years straight of "double digit reduction" in crime and noting that there are "17 neighborhoods in this city that are safer than Manhattan and LA."
"This president is known for doing a lot of talking about the city of Chicago, but if he's truly ready to roll up his sleeves to partner with us, so are we, as long as that partnership reflects who we are as Chicagoans," Johnson said.
He noted that the "same police officers the president criticized for their inability to protect the city spent all day protecting him."
Lightfoot said she was not surprised Trump "brought his insulting, ignorant buffoonery to Chicago."
"Luckily, in this city, we know the truth and we will not let anyone — no matter how high the office — denigrate who we are as a people or our status as a welcoming city," she wrote on Twitter. "Rather than belittle Chicago's communities with hateful and dishonest rhetoric, he needs to go back to D.C. and face his fate."
Lightfoot has criticized Trump in the past for proposing a rule that would allow federal contractors to make employment decisions based on religious convictions, and she’s pushed back against tweets from the president’s daughter and White House adviser Ivanka Trump about the city’s gun violence.
Following his speech Monday morning, Trump signed an executive order a White House spokesman said would "address the root causes of crime and better train, recruit and retain law enforcement officers."
Trump's visit to Chicago Monday was his first to the city since taking office. His visit stirred up a tempest even before his arrival in the city, which he's repeatedly derided as the poster child of urban violence and Democratic politics.
As of Monday afternoon, thousands of protesters\ had gathered outside the city's Trump Tower downtown, where the president is expected to hold a fundraiser later in his visit.