Chicago Violence

Lightfoot Has ‘Great Concerns' About Possibility Trump Could Send Feds to Chicago

Chicago's top cop had a different reaction

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Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said she has "great concerns" about the possibility that President Donald Trump could send federal agents to the city to help quell spiking violence and protests.

The president tweeted over the weekend what some have taken as a veiled comment that federal help could be sent to multiple cities, including Chicago.

"Look at Portland, where the pols are just fine with 50 days of anarchy," he tweeted. "We sent in help. Look at New York, Chicago, Philadelphia. NO!"

The Trump administration deployed militarized federal agents to Portland despite protests from local officials.

The mayor of Portland demanded Friday that Trump remove the agents after some detained people on streets far from federal property they were sent to protect.

The ACLU of Oregon said the federal agents appear to be violating people's rights, which “should concern everyone in the United States.”

Lightfoot said she spoke with the mayor of Portland Sunday "to get a sense of what's happened there."

"We don't need federal agents without any insignia taking people off the street and holding them I think unlawfully," Lightfoot said Monday. "That's not what we mean."

But Chicago's top cop had a different reaction.

"We will take any and all help and we've made numerous requests for titularly in our efforts to address the mid level and upper level criminal networks, drug and gang networks and we have great relationships with our local federal partners and we hope to continue that to address some of the things that are happening," Supt. David Brown said during a press conference Monday, adding that he doesn't "do politics."

The comments follow a weekend of controversial protests and continued violence in the city.

More than 60 people were shot in weekend gun violence across Chicago. At the same time, Clashes near the Christopher Columbus statue in the city's popular Grant Park resulted in 49 officers being injured and a dozen individuals being arrested, according to Chicago police officials.

Four protesters were also hurt during the confrontation, which led local elected officials and activists to condemn the officers’ tactics.

Chicago officials cited "vigilantes" who infiltrated protests with sparking much of the violence that erupted at an otherwise peaceful event. Police also said the demonstrations forced the department to "divert precious resources" to the large gatherings instead of working toward "deterring violence."

Trump's tweet also came just as Chicago Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara wrote a letter to the president asking for federal help in addressing violence in the city.

Catanzara, a vocal supporter of Trump and an equally vocal critic of Lightfoot, blasted the mayor as a “complete failure,” who is “unwilling” to do what it takes to maintain order in the city.

The statue of Christopher Columbus at Chicago's Grant Park was vandalized following a Friday night Black Lives Matter protest.

Trump has not responded directly to the letter, but has been a frequent critic of the leadership in cities like Chicago. He has repeatedly threatened to send in federal assets to help combat violence, with Lightfoot rebuffing those statements.

Trump also penned a letter to Lightfoot and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker in June, criticizing them for a “lack of leadership” in addressing violence.

“Your lack of leadership on this important issue continues to fail the people you have sworn to protect,” he said. “I am concerned it is another example of your lack of commitment to the vulnerable citizens who are the victims of this violence and a lack of respect for the men and women in law enforcement.”

Lightfoot blasted the letter as a “litany of nonsense,” calling for the president to push for meaningful actions to address violence, including gun reform legislation.

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