Judicial Watch, a conservative legal foundation, joined The Daily Caller Foundation in a racial discrimination lawsuit against Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot. The lawsuit claims Lightfoot, a Democrat, refused his interview simply because he was a white reporter.
The lawsuit follows the Chicago mayor’s decision to only provide interviews to “black and brown journalists.” In a letter released defending the decision, Lightfoot claims she is protesting the “whiteness” of the journalism industry.
“I have been struck since my first day on the campaign trail back in 2018 by the overwhelming whiteness and maleness of Chicago media outlets, editorial boards, the political press corps, and yes, the City Hall press corps specifically,” the letter states.
The “protest” carried out by the mayor is intended to be in honor of the two-year anniversary of her inauguration as Chicago’s first Black female and openly gay mayor.
After Lightfoot made this choice, Thomas Catenacci, a white reporter, requested an interview with the mayor. However, her office did not respond to his request nor repeated follow-up attempts.
“Preventing journalists from doing our jobs in such a blatantly discriminatory way is wrong and does a disservice to our readers who come from all backgrounds. Every journalist and every person who consumes the news should be concerned by Mayor Lightfoot’s actions. This affects everyone. I look forward to holding the mayor accountable,” Catenacci said.
Lightfoot has stood by her decision and multiple claims that the journalism industry is too “white.” She released a tweet saying that it is “a shame” that many members of the press corps are white.
I ran to break up the status quo that was failing so many. That isn't just in City Hall.
It's a shame that in 2021, the City Hall press corps is overwhelmingly White in a city where more than half of the city identifies as Black, Latino, AAPI or Native American.
— Mayor Lori Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) May 19, 2021
“Racial discrimination has no place in America, especially in the halls of government. Mayor Lightfoot’s admitted policy of race-based discrimination is flagrantly illegal and immoral. Simply put, we’re asking the court to find Mayor Lightfoot’s racist abuse unlawful,” added Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
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