WASHINGTON — Tuesday was a reminder that the mayor of the country’s third largest city is prominent. Mayor-elect Lori Lightfoot began three days of meetings in Washington, DC.
After Lightfoot was elected last month, President Trump called to congratulate her. The two leaders are not scheduled to meet but Lightfoot did stop by the White House to sit down with Ivanka Trump.
“I thought it was a very good conversation,” she said. “We need to make sure that we are in partnership with anybody who can help our city.”
It’s an opportunity to hit the reset button on Chicago’s relationship with the White House. Mayor Emanuel feuding with President Trump over immigration.
In speech and on Twitter and in speeches, President Trump routinely points to Chicago’s violence.
The rhetoric escalated after he was forced to cancel a 2016 campaign rally at UIC due to safety concerns.
Lightfoot has said she won’t hesitate to speak out against the president when necessary, but she hopes to have a constructive relationship and she wants to make sure Chicago gets all the federal money it’s entitled to.
Also, on the mayor-elect’s agenda Tuesday were meetings with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, Majority Whip James Clyburn.
“It’s been a great day. I mean meeting Speaker Pelosi is an incredible highlight,” Lightfoot said. “I asked all of them about the possibility of an infrastructure bill and discussing are ongoing and I expressed the great need that we have in Chicago particularly around mass transit.”
On her way to meet with the speaker, Lightfoot took a moment to take in a portrait of Shirley Chisholm, the first elected black Congresswoman. Lightfoot calls her an inspiration.
Wednesday, Lightfoot meets with Black Caucus members and on Thursday she attends the Chicago Delegation Breakfast before spending time with the Illinois US Senators.