Pritzker says Chicago is prepared for DNC amid cease-fire protests

AP23313680327548 e1705160962222

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker (D) said Chicago is prepared to host the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in August, despite concerns about massive protests against the Biden administration’s response to the Israel-Hamas war.

The convention will descend upon the Windy City from Aug. 19 to 22 to officially name President Biden as the party’s presidential nominee. Protesters are expected to launch mass opposition to Biden’s reaction to the war in Gaza, continuing calls for the president to back a full cease-fire.

Pritzker downplayed critics’ concerns in a CNN “State of the Union” interview with Dana Bash on Sunday.

“Just understand that Joe Biden is fighting for peace in the Middle East, is fighting to end the hostilities between Israel and Gaza, and make sure that we’re providing humanitarian aid there,” he said. “When you think about the protests, it’s Joe Biden that’s standing for peace, and a lasting peace at that, and it’s the Republicans that, frankly, would stoke the flames of war in the Middle East.”

Pritzker noted that protest groups calling for a cease-fire shut down an interstate outside of Chicago’s O’Hare Airport last week as part of a national movement, and that Chicago Police quickly escorted the groups off the roadway faster than other protests in the country.

“Our Chicago Police Department was able to get those folks off the highway faster than any other city in the United States. And they’re prepared for the Democratic Convention,” he said. 

“Look, we believe in free speech, and we’re going to allow people to protest and say whatever it is they want to say,” he continued. “But the reality is, we’re also going to make sure that people have ingress and egress and that they’re safe in our state.”

The growing unrest against war has raised parallels with the 1968 Democratic Convention, also in Chicago, which was marred by protests against the Vietnam War and derailed by violent policing efforts.

Pritzker instead turned his attention to the city’s 1996 convention.

“1996 was also a year of a Chicago convention. And it was a terrific convention. It’s one of the best conventions,” he said. “And I have been to every one since I was able to vote. It was one of the best conventions in my lifetime. So, I think we’re going to see something more like that.” 

“And, of course, we — in the Democratic Party, we support people’s right to protest and have their voices heard,” he added.

Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top