Burke Defends Security Detail: "A Court Order is a Court Order."

By Chuck Sudo in News on Jun 22, 2011 7:25PM

2011_6_22_burke.jpg 14 Ward Ald. Ed Burke is among four current or former city officials* -- the others being Mayor Emanuel, former Mayor Daley and City Treasurer Stephanie Neely -- to have a security detail. Burke's dates back to the "Council Wars" era when he won a court order for the detail as a public official subject to threats of harm. It's that court order that Burke is touting as the reason the Dean of City Council will not give up his security detail of six officers.

“A court order is a court order and, in order to change it, there would have to be a hearing," Burke said.

During the mayoral campaign, Mayor Emanuel said that his administration would usher in an era of "shared sacrifice" and that nothing would be left unchecked - even the size of his own security detail. Before anyone goes thinking that Emanuel is trying to anger a docile bear in Burke, the mayor tried to remind us of what he feels is the bigger picture.

“But my main goal wasn’t about the six officers related to Ald. Burke, but the 650 officers we put into the streets [on beats in high-crime neighborhoods]. . . .I’m not saying anybody gets a pass. They’ve looked at my security. They’re gonna look at everybody’s security. They’re gonna make that judgment. . . .based on safety—not politics. But I have to stay focused on what the priorities are for the city.”

Emanuel said he's also looking at shrinking the size of Daley's detail as he looks at all avenues to fufill his campaign pledge of putting 1,000 police officers on the streets.

*If Chicago Housing Authority CEO Lewis Jordan hadn't resigned last week, he would have made five city officials with a security detail.