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Windy City Times 2023-12-13
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  WINDY CITY TIMES

UPDATE: Ramirez-Rosa apologizes, steps down from roles on Chicago City Council
2023-11-06

This article shared 4329 times since Mon Nov 6, 2023
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On Nov. 4, the Chicago Aldermanic Black Caucus called for Northwest Side Ald. Carlos Ramirez-Rosa (35th Ward)—Mayor Brandon Johnson's City Council floor leader—to step down from his roles as floor leader and chair of the City's Zoning, Landmarks and Building Standards Committee after accusing him of bullying, according to WBBM Newsradio.

Apparently, that will happen, according to a statement from Mayor Brandon Johnson's office. In addition, Ramirez-Rosa has apologized.

The request came days after a special City Council meeting over Chicago's sanctuary-city status failed to happen after a quorum was not reached.

The caucus, which includes 20 of the City Council's 50 members, accused Ramirez-Rosa of physically restraining Ald. Emma Mitts (37th) from entering the chamber floor during the Nov. 2 special meeting.

According to ABC 7 Chicago, Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36th) slammed Ramirez-Rosa, saying, "The overt bullying and threatening tactics used by Alderman Ramirez-Rosa do not represent our democratic process, and is conduct unbecoming of a member of the Chicago City Council."

Ald. Anthony Beale (9th), one of those who called for the meeting, has expressed frustration that Chicago continues paying $30 million-$40 million per month to support migrants while other needs in the city go unmet. Ald. Ray Lopez (15th) said the meeting was recessed until Nov. 7, when another battle is expected.

In a statement sent to Windy City Times, Johnson said, "Over the weekend, I spoke with Alderwoman Emma Mitts and Alderman Carlos Ramirez-Rosa. Yesterday, Alderman Ramirez-Rosa and I agreed he should step down from his positions as Chicago City Council Floor Leader and Chair of the Committee on Zoning, Landmarks, and Building Standards.

"Alderwoman Mitts is a venerable leader and woman of abiding faith, who is committed to public service and the principles of accountability and mercy. Alderman Ramirez-Rosa has acknowledged his transgressions, apologized to his colleagues and committed himself to rebuilding trust.

"It is not lost on me that Thursday's events occurred during a time of heightened tension at City Hall. In recent months, the forces of division have preyed on our city, pitting us against each other in the most destructive ways. I am confident we will find a way to move forward and regain the trust and respect necessary to have a functioning legislative body."

POLITICO ran a statement from Ramirez-Rosa in which he apologized. "I sincerely apologize to my colleague, Alderwoman Emma Mitts, for the disrespectful interaction outside of Council Chambers," he said. "I also apologize to other colleagues who I have heard also felt disrespected and harmed by my actions—Alderpeople Lee, Cardona and Taliaferro.

"I feel awful about everything that happened. I have reached out to my colleagues to apologize directly and seek to make amends. I made mistakes, and I learned valuable lessons. I take full responsibility for what I've done."

The Black Caucus thanked Johnson for his action and accepted Ramirez-Rosa's apology. However, Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd Ward) has drafted a censure letter saying that Ramirez-Rosa engaged in "a clear abuse of power reminiscent of the worst aspects of our City's political history."

Ramirez-Rosa and Lopez are members of the LGBTQ+ community.

—Andrew Davis


This article shared 4329 times since Mon Nov 6, 2023
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