A federal judge is dropping the hammer on Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) over a policy that many have labeled as discriminatory.
A hearing was held earlier this month after the mayor was sued by Judicial Watch for what the conservative watchdog group described as a “racist interview policy.”
Perhaps Lightfoot herself explains the rule best:
This is exactly why I’m being intentional about prioritizing media requests from POC reporters on the occasion of the two-year anniversary of my inauguration as mayor of this great city.
— Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) May 19, 2021
Denied on the basis of race?
According to PJMedia, the hearing resulted in U.S. District Court Judge John Z. Lee, of the Northern District of Illinois, asking for more information from Lightfoot on the matter.
Lightfoot’s attornies have indicated that they will file a sworn declaration clarifying her interview policy, but it’s unclear if such a filing has been submitted.
Judicial Watch’s suit, which was reportedly filed in conjunction with the Daily Caller, stemmed from Lightfoot’s denying a request for an interview by Daily Caller reporter Thomas Catenacci, who is white.
The plaintiffs argue that Lightfoot violated Catenacci’s First Amendment rights, as well as the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
Judicial Watch says it’s seeking as a remedy a preliminary injunction to stop Lightfoot from denying interviews to reporters on the basis of race.
Just last week, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights commissioner Peter Kirsanow wrote in a letter to Lightfoot, later shared by Catenacci, that “any elected official in the United States should know” better than to impose such a policy.
“A government official, such as yourself, depriving individuals of opportunities, on the basis of their race is explicitly discriminatory,” Kirsanow wrote to the mayor, according to Fox News. “Government-sanctioned bigotry is the same sort of horrid behavior that Americans of all stripes rejected, fought against, and ultimately conquered decades ago.”
He went on: “An objective observer cannot help but wonder why such immoral and un-American attitudes are coming from the Office of the Mayor of Chicago.”