Embattled Emanuel to speak about Chicago police department

9 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Chicago has tried police reform before. How it can do better this time..

CHICAGO — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has called a special City Council meeting to discuss the police department that’s now at the center of the biggest crisis of his administration. Welcome to Clout Street: Morning Spin, our weekday feature to catch you up with what’s going on in government and politics from Chicago to Springfield. The Wednesday speech comes as Emanuel tries to restore the trust and confidence of residents in both the police force and his own leadership amid fallout over the release of a video showing the killing of a black teen by a white officer.

Officer Jason Van Dyke is charged with first-degree murder in the death of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, who appeared in the video to be walking away from Van Dyke as he was shot. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced a Justice Department civil rights investigation to determine if there are patterns of racial disparity in the police department’s use of force. The footage — ordered released by a judge and made public hours after Van Dyke was charged — set off a chain of events that captured the attention of the country.

With protesters outside the room calling for the mayor’s resignation, Emanuel stood beside his interim police chief at a news conference attempting to contain outrage over his administration’s handling of the Laquan McDonald case. Days of protests and marches followed the video’s release, including one that on the busiest shopping day of the year partially shut down the city’s most famous shopping district, Michigan Avenue. Since then, Emanuel has forced the police superintendent to resign, brought in a new head of an agency that investigates police shootings and fended off calls for his own resignation. A few days later, Emanuel announced that he had demanded and received the resignation of Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, created a new task force for police accountability and expanded the use of body cameras.

Actually, no — they’re both a little bit greedy when brokerage commissions are at stake and largely clueless when it comes to predicting fiscal calamity amid liberal profligacy, which is why average investors should avoid Chicago as if it were New York back in the 1970s. On Monday, the state attorney for Cook County criticized IPRA for taking more than seven months to give her evidence she requested for her investigation of the shooting of Ronald Johnson III. In turn, Emanuel parted ways with his choice to run the Independent Police Review Authority, the departure coming amid the McDonald scandal and serious questions about how Chicago handles reviews of police shootings.

Emanuel turned to Sharon Fairley, the first deputy and general counsel of the city’s inspector general office and a former federal prosecutor for eight years. And yet Barclays over the summer said Chicago bonds “present attractive strategic opportunities.” Investors are listening: Prices of city debt that matures in 20 years have rallied over the past two months even as the fiscal picture there continues to look bleaker by the day. “What Chicago is facing is a bit of math problem,” is how one broker spun the news. “They have a very large number that needs to be addressed.

He was in the middle of an unexpectedly difficult reelection bid, and the issue of police violence had bubbled up to the fore of the national consciousness in recent months. In the case of charges not being filed against a cop in the Ronald Johnson fatal shooting and in the new jail video, Emanuel’s foremost response is to express outrage over how the men were treated, regardless of the probe findings.

Just days after this killing, the decision by a Ferguson, Mo., grand jury not to indict the officer responsible for the shooting death of teenager Michael Brown resulted in that city being put to the torch. He’s accused of shoving a gun into a suspect’s throat and threatening to kill him. *Mayor Emanuel will talk about the federal police probe and Police Department problems at a 3 p.m. I can think of plenty of other places with better and broader economies: Texas, with its mix of energy, finance, high-tech and agriculture, to name just one.

But for deeper change, more tough decisions will need to be made this time around, observers say, though there is hope that the persistence of the Black Lives Matter movement and a federal investigation could keep the issue in the spotlight. “IPRA is a serious problem,” says Craig Futterman, a professor at the University of Chicago Law School who in 2007 testified at City Hall about the need to create an agency like IPRA. “I used to think it was ineffective, but I think that’s really wrong,” he adds. Some are saying that her decision not to charge in the Johnson case bolsters her argument that evidence — and not politics — is driving her office’s actions.

CPS’ budget counts on $480 million in pension-relief help from Springfield, which has had its own problems in trying to reach a state budget agreement since May. “Instead of supporting Gov. First a little reality: Wall Street is pushing Chicago debt in large part because city taxpayers are still shelling out more money, in terms of higher interest rates, to entice investors to buy the bonds than they have in the past, despite the recent rally in prices. To expose Emanuel to greater scrutiny is to subject the party’s highest echelons to withering criticism from its most loyal constituencies – self-described liberals and black voters. Bruce Rauner’s efforts to pass sorely needed reforms for all schools in Illinois, reforms that would save CPS hundreds of millions annually, (Mayor Rahm) Emanuel and (CPS chief Forrest) Claypool want Downstate and suburban taxpayers to pick up CPS pension costs,” Radogno wrote. “City leaders disingenuously claim it is unfair that Chicago residents pay for their own teachers (pensions), as well as teachers (pensions) everywhere else. That video was released Monday during a presentation in which Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez said her office would not charge the officer.

But the new authority, he says, “inherited the exact same staff [from OPS] with the same issues of bias that had been whitewashing these complaints all of these years.” A recent data analysis by The Chicago Tribune found that of the 409 police shootings IPRA has investigated since its formation, two have been found to be unjustified, both involving off-duty officers. A longtime congressman, the former head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and Barack Obama’s first White House chief of staff, Emanuel is inexorably linked to the Democratic Party in the Obama-era. Having an active market to sell debt provides short-term cover so he can continue to keep government large and raise property taxes to pay for additional largesse, such as a huge unfunded pension liability.

A loyal Clinton ally, Emanuel played a critical role in supporting Bill Clinton’s tough-on-crime legislation, a series of achievements Hillary Clinton now denounces as the catalyst for what she calls the “era of mass incarceration.” In a spasm of damage control, Emanuel fired his police superintendent, Gary F. City officials have long complained that city property taxpayers pay teacher pensions while city residents pay state income taxes that finance pensions for teachers outside Chicago. While a police review board previously found the officers’ actions justified, Emanuel said he did not see how the treatment of the man — who later died following a reaction to an antipsychotics drug — could “possibly be acceptable” and said he did not consider the investigation closed.

Think of it this way: Emanuel is telling the city’s middle class they should pay more to remain in the city despite the city’s burgeoning crime rate, not to mention its lousy, and scandal-tarred, school system. Cory Booker’s (D-N.J.) head of police and who played a leading role in the critically-acclaimed documentary canonizing New Jersey’s junior senator, Brick City. Rauner has proposed a property-tax freeze for local cities and school districts, but also wants provisions that weaken collective bargaining rights for union workers as a cost-saving move. The Department of Justice’s decision to investigate Chicago’s police and not its mayor is testament to the political impulse to insulate Emanuel from this crisis.

Recall: New York’s declining tax base was one of the main reasons for the city’s brush with default on some bond payments in 1975, sparking the broader fiscal crisis that took years to recover from. Supreme Court rejected a bid to overturn Highland Park’s assault weapons ban and a suburban school district saw some 600 people show up in support of a transgender locker room. Likewise, Puerto Rico is seeing an exodus of its middle and entrepreneurial class amid high taxes and soaring rates, and it too is on the edge of default.

That effort, along with a number of other items on Rauner’s legislative wish list, has held up action on a budget for state government since the new financial year began July 1. Sadly, Emanuel appears to have no clue that the steps he’s taking to deal with the city’s myriad woes are part of a long-standing playbook of what to avoid when confronted with such turmoil. The same could be said of the city of Baltimore, where Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (D) was forced to give up on the future in higher office to which she was being groomed after she presided over a riot inspired by another police brutality case.

On one level, it should surprise no one; his political patron is the economically clueless President Obama, the former community organizer and Chicago pol, who has spent eight years attacking wealth creators as the root of all evil. Rather than preserve her city, her local police cordoned off a violent protest and allowed a predominantly African-American section of Charm City to burn. Even sadder — particularly for the people of Chicago — is that there’s no loyal opposition to his liberalism other than even-more-insane liberalism from left-wing radicals who made Emanuel look moderate. And there can be no doubt that change is in the air and on the horizon,” she said. “Yet, the mission of IPRA will remain the same: thorough, fair and timely investigation of police officer misconduct.

The pattern is clear: Ferguson, Chicago, Baltimore; Democrat-led cities, with African-American interests taking a backseat to the self-preservation instincts of their leaders. This case is now cleared.” “Van Dyke’s use of deadly force was within bounds of CPD guidelines.’ Yet the accounts of those witnesses, the officers’ accounts said McDonald: ‘continued to advance…attacking Van Dyke with a knife attempting to kill (him) … continued to wave the knife … raised his right hand … as if attacking.’ None of which is seen in the video.” KOSCHMAN COP OUT — “CPD detectives’ chief, who oversaw Koschman case, retires,” by Tim Novak and Fran Spielman: “The shakeup in the Chicago Police Department continued Monday with the sudden retirement of Constantine ‘Dean’ Andrews, who personally closed the homicide of investigation of David Koschman four years ago without filing any criminal charges against the nephew of former Mayor Richard M. New York City, even in the volatile 1960s and ’70s, had an active Conservative Party, guided by the inimitable National Review editor and public intellectual Bill Buckley. All of that is critical to restoring the trust that is essential to providing the level of public safety that all of our communities deserve.” The lawyer for Johnson’s family, Michael Oppenheimer, says that process begins with acknowledging that the IPRA’s investigation into the shooting is compromised. Buckley ran for mayor and lost — but his conservative principles continued to thrive in think tanks and op-ed pages like this one so much that by 1993, New Yorkers elected Rudy Giuliani, who succeeded in massively reforming city government.

State Attorney Alvarez “relied on the IPRA investigation, when 12 to 14 hours ago the head of IPRA resigned and or was fired because of the shoddy investigations that IPRA does,” Mr. Andrews and several other police officers have been under investigation by Inspector General Joe Ferguson over their roles in the Koschman case, including alleged falsification of police reports to show that Richard J. “R.J.” Vanecko hit Koschman in self-defense during a late night argument on Division Street near Dearborn in 2004. Illinois employees, Kirk said, “they just show up, they work all day.” “My reason for this is our inherent Polish character,” Kirk continued. “The 2 million Poles that, you know, Poles just work all day long and don’t ask for recess. … We’ve got to make sure that we sell that.

We sell the Illinois worker who is just going to work like crazy.” (Kim Geiger) *AFSCME rally: State workers rallied Saturday in Chicago to turn up the pressure on Gov. Again, anyone truly concerned by urban gun crime must confront the inescapable realty that theirs are not the concerns of the nation’s liberal elite.

More rallies are planned for the coming week in Collinsville, Joliet, Marion, Rock Island, Rockford and Springfield. (Kim Geiger) *The Sunday Spin podcasts: State Rep. As murder rates in urban centers spike, law enforcement officials have blamed the availability of firearms, an increase in the amount of drugs on the streets, and a rise in organized gang activity for the violence. Ron Sandack of Downers Grove, the House GOP floor leader, said an agreement to end the Springfield stalemate may not come until April, after the March 15 primary elections. But they have also reportedly lamented “a growing willingness among disenchanted young men in poor neighborhoods to use violence to settle ordinary disputes.” Liberal partisans routinely dismiss conservatives who warn that poverty rates, unemployment and underemployment, and median incomes for African-Americans are disproportionate to those of their white counterparts, and that these are the results of failed policy rather than some omnipresent but intangible bigotry. But GOP complicity is a slender reed on which to rest Democratic hopes that African-Americans won’t one day soon begin to ask what precisely it is they’ve been voting for.

The electrical workers gave $53,900, the D.C.-based Teamsters fund gave $50,000, the Illinois Federation of Teachers $48,900 and AFSCME Council 31 gave $33,900.

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