Chicago mayor on alleged plot against Whitmer: Trump creates dangerous climate for elected officials

Michigan governor
Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan Photo credit Getty Images

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Thursday said the alleged plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is linked with President Trump’s hateful rhetoric against public officials.

Lightfoot said the federal charges laid out against a group of men in the alleged plot are chilling because she, the mayor, is continually threatened with harm.

In her words, all roads lead back to President Trump.

“We can have honest policy debates. We can disagree on a range of issues,” she said. “But Donald Trump has emboldened and empowered an element in our country that we know exists.

“Sometimes we don’t want to talk about it. But it’s absolutely there. And there’s a lot of racist, misogynist, xenophobic, violent people that are out there who threaten me my family and other elected officials because the president gives them license.”

Trump, a Republican, was at odds with Whitmer, a Democrat, over her restrictions to tamp down coronavirus in Michigan. At one point, he tweeted that his followers should “liberate” Michigan.

The president has also been accused of dog-whistling to racist groups as he seeks a second term in office.