Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel joined CNN’s Wolf Blitzer after expressing outrage earlier on Tuesday that charges had been dropped in the Jussie Smollett case.
“It makes no legal sense,” said Emanuel. “It makes no common sense. And this is an abomination of my sense of justice.”
Added Emanuel: “He went out and spoke on ABC to the country, as an African American and a gay man, about being the victim of a crime… It was all a hoax and a moral violation. … He used the hate crime laws to advance his own career and he got caught.”
“Here is my basic anger,” Emanuel added. “There is no sense from this person who now, the state’s attorney said, committed the crime, or actually the hoax. But he’s walking around like he’s exonerated, with no sense of remorse or contrition…He gets off with two days of community service.”
“He used those [anti-hate crime] laws and those sentiments that bind us together as a society, to promote his own career, and then he’s walking around as if he’s done nothing wrong.”
Emanuel continued his tirade against the actor, saying, “If he was anybody else, and this is what’s upsetting people in the city and around the country — he has one law or one kind of standard of accountability and everybody else gets another, and that’s wrong. … Everybody thinks if you’re in a position of power or position of influence, there’s two rulebooks: One for everybody else and one for the people of influence. … This is a horrible example of — if he wasn’t an actor, do you think two days of community service would be enough?”
Emanuel continued: “[If] we found out I put [a swastika] on the door for … my own career or you for your own career, put that out, do you think two days of community service [and] the slate would be clean? … The fact is he’s walking away, no remorse, no contrite, doesn’t believe he did anything wrong and used the hate crime laws to advance his own career and got caught and his entire penalty become to society is two days of community service. It’s just not right.”
Former Obama adviser David Axelrod agreed with sentiments that the case is totally shady.
Wrote Axelrod on Twitter: “This is a total head-scratcher. After all that has transpired interesting to hear the prosecutor’s rationale for kicking a case that seemed very clear. Will they now bring assault charges against the two brothers who admitted to staging the attack for money at Smollett’s behest. Or charges for lying to the police? Someone wasn’t being truthful here and the City of Chicago paid the price. … Unless some better explanation surfaces, here’s the lesson of this weird turn in the Smollett case: You can contrive a hate crime, make it a national news, get caught and-if you are a well-connected celebrity-get off for $10K and have your record expunged and files sealed. No. Sorry, folks. The brief statement offered by the prosecutor didn’t dispute the basic facts in the original charge. That’s why he was compelled to sacrifice his bond. They simply said that in light of his voluntary work in the community, this was a just resolution. Hate crimes are loathsome. Faking them is insidious and shouldn’t be excused. Despite Smollett’s denials, nothing the prosecutor said in dismissing the case supports that. If prosecutors have evidence that contradicts the indictment THEY brought, they should share it today.”