Emanuel blasts Trump administration’s opposition to Chicago consent decree

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CHICAGO — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday dismissed the Trump’s administration’s opposition to the city’s proposed consent decree.

“I don’t have time for people who talk out of both sides of their mouth,” Emanuel said.

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced in a statement this week that he plans to file a “statement of interest” against a plan that would force sweeping reforms to the Chicago Police Department under federal court supervision. Sessions echoed President Donald Trump’s criticism of violence in Chicago — pointing to a 2015 agreement to curb controversial stop-and-frisk searches.

“They’re writing basically the equivalent of a small amicus brief,” Emanuel said. “It doesn’t have any value. We’ve got real work to do fighting crime, making our streets safe.”

Emanuel joined Chicago police Supt. Eddie Johnson at a news conference Wednesday to announce the rollout of new policing strategies in six districts.

The 200-page consent decree draft was the result of a blistering report from the U.S. Department of Justice, which launched an investigation into the Chicago Police Department following outrage over the handling of the Laquan McDonald shooting.

That was during the Obama administration. Police union President Kevin Graham said he’s pleased with the Trump administration stance. Graham said police officers haven’t had a voice during the drafting of the consent decree.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said in a statement, “It’s not surprising that this justice department is opposing real reform.”

Approval of the consent decree is in the hands of a federal judge. Written comments will be accepted until Friday, and public hearings are set for later this month.

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