President Trump doubled down on his criticism of Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Wednesday– berating the Democratic mayor for the spike in violent criminal activity in her city and threatening to send out in more federal agents to combat the spoke in violence.
Speaking during a rundown on the coronavirus pandemic, Trump called Chicago a “catastrophe” and said Lightfoot was making “a big error” by not asking the White House for help in fighting criminal activity in the United States’ third most-populous city.
” Chicago is a disaster, the mayor is stating don’t come in,” Trump said. “She’s making a huge error.”
He included: “Chicago ought to be calling us and so need to Philadelphia and Detroit and lots of others.”
When questioned about a 2016 statement he made blaming former President Barack Obama for the violence in Chicago, Trump argued that his predecessor failed to stop the problem in the city during his time in office.
” He did a poor task,” Trump said.
The president’s remarks come just hours after he announced he was releasing 100 federal representatives to Chicago.
The “surge” of representatives announced on Wednesday to Chicago and other American cities is part of Operation Legend– named after 4-year-old LeGend Taliferro, who was fatally shot while sleeping in a Kansas City apartment late last month– and comes as federal police officers have currently descended on Portland, Ore. and Kansas City, Mo.
Chicago, which is currently experiencing a spat of fatal gun violence, has actually been a particular target of Trump’s criticism. A shooting at a funeral home previously today left 14 individuals injured, and followed a weekend that saw 10 individuals eliminated and 60 individuals hurt due to gun violence.
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While sending out federal agents to assist local law enforcement is not unprecedented– Chief law officer Expense Barr announced a comparable surge effort in December for 7 cities that had actually seen increasing violence– the kind of federal representative being sent out, and a few of their strategies, have actually raised concerns among state and regional lawmakers.
Generally, the Justice Department sends out agents under its own umbrella, like agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Dynamites or the Drug Enforcement Administration. However this surge effort will include Department of Homeland Security Examinations (HSI) officers, who generally carry out drug trafficking and kid exploitation examinations.
A variety of legislators from New York to Portland have spoken out against the Trump administration sending the representatives to their cities, particularly following reports that unknown federal agents detained protesters in Portland and took them away in unmarked lorries. Portland has actually been hit with near-daily presentations versus cops brutality and systemic bigotry because the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis cops custody on Might 25.
Local authorities also have complained the rises have only exacerbated stress, and criminal justice professionals state the efforts defy explanation due to the fact that of the unprecedented moment America is enduring– with a pandemic, historical unemployment and a mass reckoning over racism and how individuals of color are dealt with by cops.
Chicago’s Lightfoot has been especially critical of Trump’s usage of federal representatives in the country’s cities.
” We invite partnership, not dictatorship, and will never tolerate the type of unconstitutional deployment and state-sanctioned lawlessness we saw in Portland,” Lightfoot stated in a declaration on Wednesday.
The Associated Press added to this report.
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