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Mayor Lightfoot deals with rumor head-on

Monday, Apr 19, 2021

* WGN

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot rebuked rumors of her resignation that began circulating on social media late Saturday night and early Sunday morning, saying she will serve “today, tomorrow and into the future.”

Community activist Ja’Mal Green said in a now-deleted tweet Saturday night that Lightfoot would resign from her position on Sunday, with later rumors speculating a potential resignation was due to rumors of personal infidelity.

Lightfoot responded to the rumors Sunday morning in a series of tweets, where she said “it’s shocking and disappointing” to see people with a prominent social media presence “peddling this trash as truth.”

* Tribune

“It’s shocking and disappointing to see some media members and verified Twitter handles are peddling this trash as truth,” Lightfoot said. “If people hadn’t noticed, we have major challenges in Chicago we need to address TOGETHER. This nonsense that some apparently have the luxury of indulging in has not fed one person, stopped the pandemic, housed anyone living on the street or saved one young person.”

On Saturday, Activist Ja’Mal Green, a frequent Lightfoot critic, posted — and then deleted — a tweet saying Lightfoot was going to resign. On Sunday, Green tweeted that he was “sorry” he helped spread the rumor that she was resigning. […]

Rumors about politicians are nothing new, particularly on social media. But it’s rare for elected officials to publicly respond to unsubstantiated rumors unless reporters ask about them at a news conference. Lightfoot’s unorthodox decision to address the tweets opens the door to more of the public finding out about the rumors than otherwise would have.

* Sun-Times

Green said the rumors about Lightfoot were “circulated” by members of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7, the union that represents Chicago’s rank-and-file police officers.

In a Facebook post Sunday, the FOP urged its members to “temper their public comments” while attempting to distance John Catanzara, the union’s embattled president, from the conversation.

“There are many rumors flying around about the Mayor,” the FOP said. “Several posts and comments have mentioned President Catanzara being in possession of proof and that he is pushing the issue. BOTH ARE FALSE!!!”

“Pushing rumors,” the FOP added, isn’t the proper way to address the “extreme differences” between the union and the mayor.

“No parent would want their child to read disgusting rumors about them, including US. Extend that courtesy in this situation also,” the FOP said. “Have some empathy and use common sense.”

* It’s tempting to just laugh this whole thing off, but…


- Posted by Rich Miller        

24 Comments
  1. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 9:58 am:

    Adult, policy driven, discourse is how changes are made in politics and governing.

    Rumors are not in any mix of that.


  2. - Watcher of the Skies - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 9:59 am:

    Green said FOP “circulated” the rumors? Sure looks like Green circulated the rumors.


  3. - wow... - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:02 am:

    Well this will be disappointing for the three people who regard Ja’Mal Green as a serious person rather than an attention-grabbing gadfly.


  4. - Ok - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:03 am:

    Such an odd fantasy those cops employ that the Mayor would resign even if this stuff was true.


  5. - Flyin' Elvis'-Utah Chapter - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:03 am:

    Oh, thank you inventors of social media.


  6. - Masker - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:15 am:

    Hey, Obama’s basketball pal arnie Duncan joined the fray a tad. Don’t let him off the hook.


  7. - phocion - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:17 am:

    Well, the FOP did manage to make Mayor Lightfoot much more sympathetic in the public mind. Great job, guys!


  8. - low level - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:19 am:

    Like Jay Em, I find it astounding that anything the FOP would put out about the Mayor would be taken seriously by anyone but far right wingers. And I’m not particularly a fan of hers either.

    As for Green, he’s sorry? I find that difficult to believe.


  9. - Frank talks - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:21 am:

    Why is Green, a criminal justice social activist, spreading rumors from some obscure source?

    Of all things Mr. Green should be leery of, considering his history and knowledge of the FOP, a cop twitter site for his inside information?


  10. - Soccermom - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:27 am:

    Mr. Green, the enemy of your enemy is not always your friend.


  11. - dan l - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:27 am:

    ——-
    Green said FOP “circulated” the rumors? Sure looks like Green circulated the rumors.
    ——-
    Building up a homophobic rumor does _not_ sound like something that the FOP would ever do. As you know, they are mature and right minded. They would never resort to this kind of rumor mongering and name calling. They are America’s best and brightest.


  12. - Montrose - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:33 am:

    I was very disappointed to see a lot of people I agree with on policy giddily passing this rumor around on social media. I have as much frustration with the Mayor as anyone, but trafficking in rumors like this helps no one.


  13. - Responsa - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 10:55 am:

    Surely it should be increasingly obvious that this is a poorly orchestrated direct hit of some sort from the left. And despite being clothed in rumor of a personal scandal to get public attention, it is going to play out within the Toledo video fallout, the CTU problems, accusations of general incompetence (regularly discussed here) and alleged misapplication of Covid Cares funds which was already in the news back in Feb.


  14. - @misterjayem - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:02 am:

    “Surely it should be increasingly obvious that this is a poorly orchestrated direct hit of some sort from the left.”

    Just like the January 6 storming of the United States Capitol, rite?

    – MrJM


  15. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:10 am:

    === “Surely it should be increasingly obvious that this is a poorly orchestrated direct hit of some sort from the left.”

    Just like the January 6 storming of the United States Capitol, rite?===

    My gosh, that’s taking the batting practice fastball yard… whew.

    Here’s the sitch, for me…

    There’s no way a rumor-mongering plan was ever going to lead to resignation.

    No amount of rumor like this will sully the damage done by both CPD … and Lightfoot.

    In the end, it’s like 2-3 drunk souls hoping to feel better about their bad, by creating a “false bad” in hopes the life of its own is a balm.

    Didn’t work in junior high, not working now, and those in a bar doing it online here have grasp of what it means to change policy or governing in an adult world.


  16. - Chicago Cynic - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:24 am:

    I found this whole episode to be rather pathetic. First off, I knew nothing of these rumors. It was a weekend and I wasn’t paying that much attention but so many people denying the rumors made me go find out what they were. I get it’s a catch 22 but it was unfortunate. And the Mayor’s reference to the mansion in Sauganash made no sense to me. I later learned it was a previous rumor but it definitely highlights the risk of raising the profile of rumors in an attempt to debunk them.


  17. - Amalia - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:25 am:

    Ja’Mal Green is a proven goof. but Arne Duncan? what exactly was his role in this?


  18. - WestBurbs - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:27 am:

    Agree with MrJM on this one. But, as mentioned, what the heck was Arne Duncan doing “subtly” fanning the flames. Totally baffling to me.


  19. - Rabid - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:30 am:

    Twitter and Facebook the dumbing down of America


  20. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:49 am:

    === Oh boo hoo, you leftist loons spread blatant lies and crazy rumors about Donald Trump every single day for over 4 years.===

    *In-Law Uncle has entered the chat*

    At least you didn’t feel the need to include “woke”, but I’m guessing ya wanted to badly.

    Claiming “it’s fine” for victimhood of the former President is on brand for the in-law uncle.


  21. - WSJ Paywall - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:51 am:

    I for one am shocked that something Ja’Mal Green said for attention was found to be untrue.


  22. - don the legend - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 11:53 am:

    ==…spread blatant lies and crazy rumors about Donald Trump every single day for over 4 years.==

    Donald Trump spread blatant lies and crazy rumors every single day for over 4 years.

    Cindy, your words were just a little out of order. You’re welcome.


  23. - Responsa - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 12:13 pm:

    ==what the heck was Arne Duncan doing “subtly” fanning the flames. Totally baffling to me.==

    If you consider Arne’s affiliations and former job titles that might be a clue.


  24. - Sayitaintso - Monday, Apr 19, 21 @ 12:14 pm:

    “Twitter and Facebook the dumbing down of America”. Agree, but they are only the ‘vehicle’….its the dummies that get in that are the downers.


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