Illinois Lawmaker Files Legislation to Remove Mayor Emanuel

State Representative LaShawn Ford, a Chicago Democrat, filed a bill on Wednesday in Springfield to allow for the recall of Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

House Bill 4356 would set up the mechanism to initiate a recall election. If passed by both House and Senate and signed by the governor, a recall election could occur if supported by at least two Chicago alderman and the signatures of 85,000 registered voters.

Ford, who represents the Austin neighborhood, said Emanuel should be held accountable, if he doesn’t move the city forward as he has promised. He believes the bill will pass despite the mayor’s powerful Springfield allies, including Senate President John Cullerton and House Speaker Michael Madigan.

“It’s about doing what the people have asked me to do,” Ford said.

The House is not due back in session until early January.

Emanuel’s administration has faced intensifying criticism over its handling of police misconduct from all sides. Protesters filled downtown streets and block traffic Wednesday with calls for the mayor to step down after he publicly apologized on Dec. 9 for the death of Laquan McDonald, the 17-year-old shot 16 times by a Chicago police officer in 2014. and criticized what he called decades of police corruption in an address to Chicago's City Council.

Meanwhile, the Justice Department announced last week the launch of an investigation into the use of force by Chicago's police department. 

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