Chicago Mayor Blames Richard Nixon for Shooting Over 100 People Over Weekend
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Chicago Mayor Blames Richard Nixon for Shooting Over 100 People Over Weekend

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson has apparently suggested that President Richard Nixon is to blame for the city’s endemic gun violence problem.

More than 100 people were injured in Chicago shootings, at least 19 fatally, on the Fourth of July weekend, a time of frequent gun violence.

“We stand here today and talk about a weekend of violence that is the result of generations of underinvestment and deep disenfranchisement in the communities where so much violence has occurred,” Johnson, a Democrat who took office last year, said at a news conference Monday.

“We are here to say, firmly, that enough is enough,” he said. “Enough is enough. When this reckless violence devastates our city on this scale, we lose a part of the soul of Chicago.”

During a news conference, Johnson said he had taken steps to ensure Chicago had sufficient federal resources. He called on federal authorities to respond to mass shootings in Chicago “as they have done in other places across this country.”

A reporter later asked Johnson if he had heard any gunfire over the long weekend in the west end neighborhood where the mayor and his family live.

“Austin is beautiful, but it’s a neighborhood that has been sadly neglected for decades,” Johnson said. “Of course we hear gunshots.”

Chicago Mayor Blames Richard Nixon for Shooting Over 100 People Over Weekend
Mayor Brandon Johnson attends a drivers meeting in the Chicago Stock Exchange Trading Room prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Grant Park 165 race at Chicago Street Course on July 7, 2024 in Chicago, Illinois….

Meg Oliphant/Getty Images

He went on to say, “What we experienced over the weekend is unacceptable, and we didn’t get here overnight. But everyone knows that. Let’s tell the whole story of how we got here… the fact is that where there’s the most violence, there’s the most poverty.”

He continued: “We need to hold people accountable, but you know what my ultimate goal is? It’s to transform this city so that we cut off the path of boys between the ages of 10 and 19 who are either victims or perpetrators. So yes, it’s personal.

“The Black Death has been accepted in this country for a very long time, unfortunately. We had a chance 60 years ago to get to the root causes. People were laughing at President Johnson, and we ended up with Richard Nixon. I will work hard every day to transform this city. This is what it takes to build a better, stronger, safer Chicago.”

Johnson did not elaborate on his comments about Nixon. His office was contacted for comment via email.

The Richard Nixon Foundation responded to Johnson’s comments on social media.

“Mayor Johnson’s reference to President Nixon is baseless, and the facts are not on his side in his characterization of Richard Nixon and the Nixon administration’s civil rights record,” the foundation wrote in a thread on X’s Twitter page, along with a list of the administration’s accomplishments.

Excerpts from Johnson’s statement also went viral on X, where they were met with negative reaction.

“Over 100 people were shot in Chicago this past weekend, 18 fatally. Mayor Brandon Johnson blamed it on Richard Nixon at his press conference today,” one person wrote in a post on X that has been viewed nearly 2 million times. “No, this is not a joke.”

Johnson’s comments are a “desperate distraction,” wrote another X user. “Leadership requires addressing the issues of the moment, not distracting from the past.”

Another person wrote that “Johnson’s attempt to shift blame is just disgusting. President Nixon is not to blame for you and your Democratic predecessors turning the great city of Chicago into a crime-ridden sh***hole.”