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Chicago’s Mayor Lori Lightfoot is now learning just how much she can trigger her opponents as her office is hit with a lawsuit over her decision to only grant one-on-one interviews with journalists of color last week. This decision was spurred by her noticing the overwhelming whiteness of the press corps, and wanting to install a change in time for the two-year anniversary of her inauguration.
Lightfoot explained her decision in a Twitter thread last week, noting that it would only be for the day marking the anniversary.
Thomas Catenacci, national reporter for the Daily Caller News Foundation filed the lawsuit in federal this past Thursday. “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,” Catenacci wrote in a statement. “I look forward to holding the mayor accountable.” The lawsuit claims that Catenacci was “irreparably harmed” by the alleged denial of his right to free speech and equal protection under the First and 14th Amendments. He also claims that he filed three interview requests that were ignored.
The mayor’s legal department refused to comment, but Lightfoot remains unbothered. “One day out of 365, I say that I’m going to mark the anniversary of my two years in office by giving exclusive one-on-ones to journalists of color, and the world loses its mind,” Lightfoot said. “How about we focus on doing what is necessary to step up?
While Catenacci and other critics have accused the mayor of making this another discriminatory and pandering stunt, putting it in the same vein as her decision to temporarily move statues of Christopher Columbus from Grant and Arrigo Parks last summer, legal scholars feel their lawsuit might fizzle out just like the Bears’ search for a franchise quarterback.