CHICAGO — The Republican-controlled House Judiciary Committee was in Chicago Tuesday to talk about violent crime.
Held at the local Fraternal Order of Police headquarters, Democrats called the move a political stunt, adding that Republicans should be in Washington to avoid a government shutdown.
Only Republicans made the trip, Democrats on the committee boycotted the hearing.
“I’m recent years we’ve seen how the radical left’s agenda makes crime worse,” said Republican Committee Chair Jim Jordan.
“I predict to you that if we, as a nation, continue on this path of lawlessness and a disregard for the rule of law, we will lose our freedom,” said Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ).
The meeting began Tuesday morning with three witnesses — two of whom are retired Chicago police — the third had a family member who was killed.
Gianno Caldwell, a Fox News analyst, whose younger brother was shot dead 15 months ago said he was not the intended target.
“Chicago is an active war zone,” Caldwell said. “Living in Chicago should not come with a death sentence but it does for too many Chicagoans. The elected officials here have systematically endangered the lives of all Chicagoans but especially those of color, the marginalized they claim to care about the most.”
Also speaking retired police Lieutenant John Garrido and Officer Carlos Yanez, Jr., who was seriously injured during a traffic stop that left his partner dead. They shared thoughts about the challenges officers face.
“When politicians prioritize ideological goals over evidence-based practices it puts our officers in a difficult position,” said former Chicago police officer John Garrido.
Added CPD officer Carlos Yanez, Jr.: “COPA continues to serve suspensions to officers like candy on Halloween. Cook County has its own issues under Kim Foxx’s administration. I’ve never heard of so many States Attorneys resigning or transferring to other counties refusing to no longer work under her.”
A press release from a committee spokesperson said the goal is to examine victims of violent crime in Chicago and how Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s “pro-crime and anti-victim policies” are leading to an increase in violent crime.
State’s Attorney Kim Foxx blasted the hearing.
“It’s a joke and it is exploitive of the people who live here and who have been victims of violent crime,” Foxx told WGN News.
When asked what Congress can do to help make Chicago safer, Foxx replied, “We have needed reasonable common sense gun laws to be passed since the early 90s.”
On Monday, Congressman Danny Davis called the hearing a distraction from the Republicans’ inability to fund the government. The deadline to fund the government and avoid a shutdown is this weekend.
Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky echoed Davis’ sentiments.
“Jim Jordan and his MAGA allies are the same people who, on January 6th, 2021, enabled an attack on the United States Capitol and sought to end American democracy,” she said. “They have no business being in Chicago discussing public safety.”
No comment from Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson about Tuesday’s hearing. City Council is expected to confirm his pick for the city’s next top cop on Wednesday.