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.”
“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.
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…