The left’s ‘woke’ might actually be having an awakening. “It’s not Abbott’s fault, because he didn’t ask for it. We asked for it” stated Zerlina Smith-Members, a Chicago activist. “Smith-Members, a leader in the Chicago-Cook County Coalition for Humane Migration Management, is among the growing chorus of Chicago residents, neighborhood activists, and business owners — many of them left-wingers and Democrats — who are calling foul over the city’s and the state’s handling of the ongoing migration crisis” writes National Review.
Black Democrats such as Smith-Members have been some of the most vocal critics of Chicago’s Democratic leaders, with the progressive response to the crisis infuriating some more traditional Democratic groups..
“The immigration crisis is going to flip the state of Illinois purple,” Smith-Members said. “It’s a Biden thing. It’s a Pritzker thing. It’s a Brandon Johnson thing. They wanted sanctuary cities,” said Smith-Members, who is running for Johnson’s former seat on the Cook County commission. “It’s not Abbott’s fault, because he didn’t ask for it. We asked for it.”
Dr. Lora Chamberlain, a peace activist on Chicago’s North Side, said she doesn’t blame Abbott “one little bit” for busing migrants to cities that previously said they would welcome them. “What state could possibly take in millions of refugees?” said Chamberlain, who is angry at city leaders for converting her neighborhood’s beloved community center into a migrant shelter.
National Review reports that Chicago has been a sanctuary city since the mid 1980s and that just days after Pritzker was sworn in as governor in 2019, during Donald Trump’s presidency, he signed an executive order saying that immigrants and asylum-seekers are “critical to the fabric of our state” and help to “make Illinois a great place to live.”
He later sent a letter to then-secretary of state Mike Pompeo saying Illinois would “proudly consent” to helping refugees and that he was “committed to ensuring that Illinois is a welcoming state, especially for refugees and those seeking asylum,” according to a report in the Chicago Tribune.
How times have changed; last month, Pritzker sent a letter to Abbott pleading “for mercy” and asking him to stop busing migrants to Chicago during the winter. Johnson has said the influx of migrants into Chicago is “unsustainable,” and he has accused Abbott of continuing to “sow seeds of chaos.”
Last month, Pritzker sent a letter to Abbott pleading “for mercy” and asking him to stop busing migrants to Chicago during the winter. Johnson has said the influx of migrants into Chicago is “unsustainable,” and he has accused Abbott of continuing to “sow seeds of chaos.”