Statement of Rep. Davis on Deployment of Federal Law Enforcement to Chicago
July 21, 2020
Mr. President, the reported deployment of Homeland Security officers, including Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers to “assist” with what is constitutionally, and by statute, the responsibility of local law enforcement, is not requested, is not necessary, is not welcome, is not helpful, is not sound law enforcement practice, and is not in the interest of Chicago’s residents.
Like the deployment of such officers in Portland, Oregon operating without appropriate authorization, without appropriate legal authority, without the consent and cooperation of state and local authorities, without coordination with local law enforcement, without the checks and balances of normal law enforcement, it is provocative, it is illegal, it is counterproductive, and it smacks of police state tactics contrary to the most basic notions of our democracy and in violation of the safety and some of the most basic rights of our people.
If you are looking to assist Chicago, or Portland, or any other community then work with the House and the Senate to provide the resources necessary to address the Covid-19 pandemic, to meet the urgent needs of the front line medical providers, to address the urgent and on-going need for assistance for the millions of unemployed, for those millions in danger of losing their homes and for the millions who are already living on the streets without shelter, for those millions who have lost their health insurance or who never had health insurance, for local and state governments and for millions of small businesses and non-profits facing ruin and in need of emergency financial assistance because our economy is in shambles due to your mismanagement of the pandemic and your regressive, failed economic policies.
If you are looking to assist Chicago, or Portland, or any other community then stop the political posturing, put on a mask, come out to the Rose Garden and commit yourself to work with the House and the Senate and Governors and local officials to find those resources right now, this week, while Congress is in session. As my dear friend John Lewis would say if he were here today: “It’s the right thing to do.”