Mayor Rahm Emanuel tried Tuesday to portray Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan as his “partner” on police reform, but the mayor’s actions and Madigan’s lawsuit against the city called the mayor’s bold claims into question.
Corporation Counsel Ed Siskel said there’s a simple explanation for the seemingly adversarial lawsuit. It’s the necessary legal step before a federal judge will order the parties to negotiate a consent decree.
“Courts only hear cases or controversies. That is a technical term that has constitutional significance,” Siskel said.
“If we had gone to federal court with Lisa Madigan and said, ‘Enter a consent decree with us,’ they would say, ‘I don’t know what you’re talking about. Get out of here unless you file a lawsuit.’ ”
University of Chicago law professor Craig Futterman, a lead counsel in the earlier lawsuit, doesn’t buy that explanation.
He believes the Emanuel-Madigan partnership is a “tale of kicking and screaming.”
“With the Illinois attorney general . . . putting the muscle of the state behind it, now [Emanuel is saying], `We welcome federal court oversight. Disregard what I just said,’ ” Futterman said.
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