Conservative commentator Paris Dennard told Hill.TV Wednesday that Lori Lightfoot’s (D) election as Chicago’s first black woman mayor means “absolutely nothing” for the city.
“Absolutely nothing — kudos, congratulations to Lightfoot,” Dennard, who is on President Trump’s 2020 reelection advisory board, said during a panel discussion.
Lightfoot will also be the city’s first openly gay mayor.
“Chicago is run by Democrats and have been run by liberals for many, many years and they are suffering because of that,” Dennard said, pointing to the city’s struggles with crime and violence. “I think the Chicago residents would benefit from having the ideas and debate and conservative principles … when you look at education and crime across the board.”
Democratic strategist Don Calloway dismissed Dennard’s observations as a “Fox News talking point.”
“That is so ridiculous, and it fails to recognize that actual systemic inequality was put into place via housing segregation, via the ways that highways bisect minority communities from the rest of the cities. This is intentional,” Calloway said. “This goes back to the creation of ghettos — there is social and urban science around this and it is such a cheap and silly talking point that Dems run cities, therefore look at the crime.”
Calloway had a much more positive take on Lightfoot’s election.
“Representation matters, full stop,” he said. “I am optimistic that she will have a progressive agenda that will include everybody in the city in a way that, frankly, Rahm Emanuel has failed,” he said, referring to the current mayor.
Several Democratic 2020 contenders, including Sens. Kamala Harris (Calif.) and Corey Booker (N.J.), congratulated Lightfoot on Wednesday following her win.
“In a city that serves as the hometown for many Black American politicians who have made history, there is another political first,” Booker said in a tweet. “There is another political first. Congrats @LightfootForChi on becoming Chicago’s first Black woman mayor and good luck as you embark on this historic journey.”
Lightfoot is scheduled to take office in May.
— Tess Bonn