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Rahm Calls Out Rauner, Trump As Budget Sails Through City Council

By Stephen Gossett in News on Nov 16, 2016 7:42PM

Getty Images / Photo: Jeff Schear

As expected, Rahm Emanuel’s budget proposal sailed through the City Council on Wednesday, with unanimous approval in no time at all. But the mayor didn’t stop there, taking the opportunity to continue his broadside against Donald Trump—while also saving some fire for Gov. Bruce Rauner.

Aldermen introduced a resolution that urged Rauner to defend undocumented immigrants and support Chicago’s sanctuary-city status. Rauner danced around the topic of Trump in the months preceding the election, trying to not embolden Democrats or hurt Republican chances in downstate races where red-leaning voters are more fond of Donald. The governor still seems shy about even speaking the president's name.

According to Tribune City Hall reporter John Byrne, Emanuel received a standing ovation from the City Council after an immigrant-support speech in which the mayor said Trump “uses a stereotype [of Jews] to justify he’s not anti-Semitic.”

Emanuel on Sunday evening released a statement confirming that Chicago would stay a sanctuary city for undocumented immigrants, a pronouncement he reaffirmed at a press conference on Monday with several local officials. Emanuel—who, it should be said, accepted $50,000 in donations from Trump in 2010—began to publicly challenge Trump most notably during the honorary street sign kerfuffle.

But, oh yeah, the budget, lest we be accused of following too closely in the City Council's footsteps...

The quickly-passed budget encompasses all of the major, expected details: $60 million to pay for 970 new police officers; a seven-cent tax per bag on paper and plastic bags; a $100 million Chicago Community Catalyst Fund that finances various community projects; a four-year extension of the 20-year digital billboard agreement; the creation of Municipal ID program, which aims to make service easier to access for all residents In total, the budget runs $8.2 billion.

“For the first time in a long time, the City passed a budget free of an immediate pension crisis and free of the black cloud of insolvency that was threatening the retirements of City employees and the financial future of Chicago,” Emanuel said in a release. “Our work of righting the financial ship is not complete, and we will continue to invest in our future, tackle new challenges as they arise and safeguard prosperity in Chicago’s neighborhoods.”