A Chicago reporter who filed a lawsuit against Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot for allegedly silencing him by pulling his city press credentials fired back at her yet again in a fierce exchange at a Wednesday city council meeting.
“You shut down our schools, you shut down the churches, you shut down the businesses. You did the one thing I thought could never happen: As somebody who was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, I never thought in my life that I would ever see the city of Chicago brought down so low,” reporter William Kelly slammed Lightfoot.
“I hope that, after today’s city council meeting, you will pack your suitcase and get the hell out of my city.”
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Kelly spoke out about the tussle Thursday on “Fox & Friends,” telling host Steve Doocy that the tense moment was his chance to speak out on behalf of the citizens of Chicago.
“Even if she didn’t pull my press credentials, I still would not have had the opportunity to ask her a question or speak for the people of Chicago after the city council meeting because Mayor Lightfoot canceled her post-city council meeting press conference,” he said.
“I applied for the public comments section right before the meeting. It’s a lottery. It’s limited to five people to speak for three minutes, and the luck of the Irish – St. Patrick’s Day – I was one of the five.”
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Kelly formerly had standoffs with Lightfoot on several occasions and alleged she sought to “prevent anyone from questioning her about her multiple failures in office or about [her] false statements” in last year’s lawsuit.
The lawsuit claimed that he had caused “great embarrassment” for the ill-fated mayor by asking her “hard and embarrassing questions.”
He came back to the press credentials issue during Wednesday’s confrontation, criticizing the mayor’s actions to her face.
“I used to be sitting over there with my colleagues, but I’m standing over here,” he said pointing toward the press pool. “You told me that crime was down, my videos went viral, amassed millions likes and shares, and it was hurting your re-election campaign, so you revoked my media credential.”
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Lightfoot did not respond to Kelly’s comments at the council meeting, but he added that he isn’t finished with the story yet and is writing a book to encapsulate the experiences of Chicagoans who feel as if they have been silenced during Lightfoot’s administration and to make sure the same mistakes will not happen in future administrations.
“I felt like I had to do that [confront Lightfoot] because so many Chicagoans have told me they feel like I’m speaking for them, and they never had their voices heard.”
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The city cited an altercation between Kelly and the mayor’s security detail for revoking his press credentials.
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