Sessions Assails Chicago Leaders on Immigration

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions blasted the “political leadership of Chicago” and “the culture of lawlessness that has beset the city” after Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration sued Sessions to bar him from cutting federal crimefighting funds to sanctuary cities, the Chicago Sun-Times reports. “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,” Sessions said. “They have demonstrated an open hostility to enforcing laws designed to protect law enforcement — federal, state, and local — and reduce crime, and instead have adopted an official policy of protecting criminal aliens who prey on their own residents.

“This is astounding given the unprecedented violent crime surge in Chicago, with the number of murders in 2016 surpassing both New York and Los Angeles combined. The city’s leaders cannot follow some laws and ignore others and reasonably expect this horrific situation to improve,” Sessions said. He added, “The mayor complains that the federal government’s focus on enforcing the law would require a ‘reordering of law enforcement practice in Chicago.’ But that’s just what Chicago needs: a recommitment to the rule of law and to policies that roll back the culture of lawlessness that has beset the city.” Though the Trump administration has attempted to link sanctuary-city status to the city’s crime problem, illegal immigrants have played no role in the overwhelming majority of the murders that have put the city in the national spotlight. “The federal government’s plans will hamper community policing and public safety,” Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said in response to Sessions. “Undocumented immigrants are not driving violence in Chicago, and that’s why I want our officers focused on community policing and not trying to be the immigration police.”

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