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Chicago police union board votes 'no confidence' in Superintendent Eddie Johnson for skipping Trump's speech

'I can't in good conscience stand by while racial insults and hatred are cast from the oval office'

Scott Olson/Getty Images

The board of directors of the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police issued a vote of "no confidence" last week in Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson in protest of Johnson's decision to skip Monday's speech to the police chief's conference in Chicago.

President Donald Trump will be in Chicago on Monday, Oct. 28 to address the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference. Johnson announced last week that he would be skipping the speech in protest, saying, "I will not be attending the president's speech because the values of the people of Chicago are more important than anything that he would have to say."

According to WBBM-TV, the FOP Lodge 7 board of directors responded with a vote of "no confidence" in Johnson, noting that the president "has always been a supporter of law enforcement."

Johnson responded to the "no confidence" vote by implying that the Board of Directors does speak for the rank-and-file membership in this matter. In a statement released to WBBM, Johnson said, "While today's decision is from the Board and not the active FOP membership, I understand and respect that the Lodge is upset about the decision to not stand with the President. As police officers, our job is to be the voice for the voiceless and ambassadors to the communities that we serve. I can't in good conscience stand by while racial insults and hatred are cast from the Oval Office or Chicago is held hostage because of our views on new Americans."

Johnson did not further clarify what he meant by "racial insults and hatred... cast from the oval office." Presumably, his other complaint stems from the administration's decision to withhold federal law enforcement funding to sanctuary cities.

Johnson is likewise under fire for an embarrassing incident in which Johnson was found by Chicago police officers on Oct. 17 asleep and slumped behind the wheel of his car. Johnson initially stated that he had become fatigued and fallen asleep due to a mixup with his blood pressure medications, but subsequently admitted to Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot that he had also been drinking.

Johnson has since refused to answer media questions about how much he had to drink, noting the ongoing internal investigation into his conduct. The officers who found Johnson have likewise been criticized for allowing Johnson to drive home without giving him a breathalyzer test.

Johnson also made national news during a blistering press conference he held following the arrest of "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett, in which he blasted Smollett for allegedly orchestrating a phony hate crime.

One last thing…
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