State Watch

Chicago mayor blames violence on Trump: ‘Direct result of a failure of federal leadership’ on guns

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Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) said Tuesday issues leading to gun violence in her city is a result of President Trump’s failure to take action on gun reform legislation. 

“We’re doing an all-hands-on-deck strategy, we’re really focussing on the root causes of the violence, but fundamentally we have too many illegal guns on our street and that is a direct result of a failure of federal leadership,” Lightfoot said Tuesday in an interview with MSNBC.

“Which is why we need change in November and we need the kind of leadership that Joe Biden is going to bring to our country.”

Lightfoot’s comments come in wake of criticism Trump has leveled at the mayor over gun violence in Chicago. 

During a law enforcement round table on Monday, Trump said Chicago’s gun violence was worse than “any war zone that we’re in.”

“When you have 20 people killed, 22 people killed in one weekend in Chicago, and you have 88 shootings — it’s not even conceivable. That’s worse than Afghanistan. I hate to say it: That’s worse than any war zone that we’re in, by a lot.  It makes them look like tame places by comparison.  So we’re not going to let it go on,” Trump said. 

Trump’s roundtable comments followed a letter he sent to Lightfoot and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker (D) last month in which he accused the Democrats of failing the city amid a string of violent incidents in Chicago. 

“If you go back over many years President Trump has said a lot of disparaging things about the city of Chicago. He likes to use us as a political punching bag,” Lightfoot said. “But if the president was really committed to helping us deal with our violence he would do some easy things.” 

Lightfoot said Trump should push for universal background checks and an assault weapons ban. 

“This is the kind of thing that federal leadership could do, but as long as we are challenged with having states surrounding us, notably Indiana that has very lax gun laws, where somebody can drive across the border and literally load up a vehicle with military grade weapons and bring them back to the city of Chicago, we’re going to continue to be challenged,” the mayor said. 

Chicago police said 64 people were shot, 11 fatally, last weekend, ABC reported. It follows the weekend of July 4 when 87 people were shot, and the weekend before that when there were 67 shooting victims, according to the report. 

A spokesperson for the White House wasn’t immediately available for comment.

Tags assault weapons ban Background checks Donald Trump gun violence Joe Biden

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