The Fraternal Order of Police chapter in Democrat-controlled Chicago has endorsed President Trump’s reelection bid in a move that may serve to boost the president’s law-and-order campaign theme.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the union’s board of directors convened last Wednesday and voted unanimously to support the president’s reelection.
The union’s endorsement came only days after its national umbrella organization, the Fraternal Order of Police, also voted to endorse Trump’s campaign. The Fraternal Order of Police is the nation’s largest police union, representing more than 355,000 members.
Why does it matter?
While the Tribune noted that the move was largely expected, the fact that it came from an organization in heavily Democratic Chicago is notable. At the very least, it highlights a growing intolerance for the rampant violence and destruction that has resulted from civil unrest and Black Lives Matter protests in several cities across the country.
Chicago, for one, has been plagued by an historic rise in violence this year amid protests and coronavirus-related shutdowns. The city’s Democratic mayor, Lori Lightfoot, has been harshly criticized by police for not doing enough to stop the violence and the rioting.
In August, news broke that Lightfoot — while supporting protesters publicly — had banned protests on her street and had been routinely stationing over 100 cops outside her home to enforce the ban.
Situations such as this reportedly caused a rift between the city’s police and the mayor and caused some “quiet grumbling” within the department.
John Catanzara, the Chicago chapter’s president, reportedly told the Tribune that the endorsement largely reflects the views of its membership before adding there will be some who disagree.
“There’s definitely people who are not going to be happy about it,” Catanzara said. “There are more Democrats, locally speaking, but there’s even some Democrats who would agree that the current president has been very good for employment and law enforcement these days.”
The union is just the latest in a long line of pro-law enforcement organizations to back the president’s reelection.
In July, the National Association of Police Organizations endorsed Trump after supporting former President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. Then police unions in Florida and New York City also signaled their support for Trump.