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AOC blasts Biden’s ‘shameful’ nomination of ex-Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as ambassador to Japan

AOC demands Senate reject Biden’s ‘shameful’ nomination of ex-Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as ambassador to Japan because he helped ‘cover up’ the cop murder of 16-year-old Laquan McDonald

  • Biden nominated Emanuel to be Ambassador Japan, making the announcements on a Friday last month
  • Liberal Democrats have pointed to his handling of the shooting of McDonald by a white police officer
  • Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke was convicted of second-degree murder in the shooting 
  • Ocasio-Cortez issued a statement accusing him of a ‘cover up’ of the murder
  • She said it should be ‘disqualifying’
  • The Japan ambassadorship is a key diplomatic post  


Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez issued a blistering statement Wednesday trashing President Biden’s nomination of former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to serve as ambassador to Japan

The left-wing House Democrat called the nomination ‘deeply shameful,’ due to Emanuel’s role in a ‘cover up’ of video fo the 2014 police shooting of Chicago teen Laquan McDonald, she wrote.

House members have no role in ambassadorial nominations, although her withering statement turns up the temperature on the confirmation process in the 50-50 Senate

‘This nomination is deeply shameful. As mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel helped cover up the murder of Laquan McDonald – a mere teenager when he was shot 16 times in the back by a Chicago Police Officer,’ she said in a statement she posted on Twitter and released through her office.

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) blasted President Joe Biden’s nomination of former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as ambassador to Japan, calling it ‘deeply shameful’

‘This alone should be flatly disqualifying for any position of public trust, let alone representing the United States as an ambassador. That the Biden administration seeks to reward Emanuel with an ambassadorship is an embarrassment and betrayal of the values we seek to uphold both within our nation and around the world. I urge the Senate to vote NO on his confirmation,’ she said.

A 2016 internal report released in 2019 amid public outcry detailed numerous ethical violations to conceal details about the shooting of the 17-year old. 

Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke was convicted of second-degree murder in the shooting. He fired his weapon 16 times.

Emanuel kept video of the shooting from being made public at a time when he was seeking reelection. He denied taking part in a coverup of the dashcam video, saying he was following city rules. He also refused calls to step down over the incident. 

Rahm Emanuel denied carrying out a coverup of the video, which was kept out of public view while he was seeking reelection

Rahm Emanuel denied carrying out a coverup of the video, which was kept out of public view while he was seeking reelection

The murder of Laquan McDonald took place on October 20, 2014, in Chicago, Illinois, when the 17-year-old African American was fatally shot by Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke

The murder of Laquan McDonald took place on October 20, 2014, in Chicago, Illinois, when the 17-year-old African American was fatally shot by Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke

AOC blasts Biden's 'shameful' nomination of ex-Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as ambassador to Japan

Former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke enters the courtroom for his sentencing hearing at the Leighton Criminal Court Building in Chicago, Illinois, USA, 18 January 2019. Van Dyke was sentenced to 81 months for shooting Laquan McDonald, firing his weapon 16 times, in 2014

Former Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke enters the courtroom for his sentencing hearing at the Leighton Criminal Court Building in Chicago, Illinois, USA, 18 January 2019. Van Dyke was sentenced to 81 months for shooting Laquan McDonald, firing his weapon 16 times, in 2014

‘We have a process. It’s called the election,’ he told Politico in 2015. ‘The voters spoke. I”ll be held responsible for my actions and the decisions I made.’

Before moving back to his hometown to become Chicago Mayor, Emanuel had a reputation hard-driving House member, eventually serving as Barack Obama’s chief of staff and helping push through the Affordable Care Act.

His nomination could set up tense discussions over police misconduct and policing methods. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) is a prominent member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and has made policing issues a top issue. 

The Japan ambassadorship is a key diplomatic post, filled previously by former Sen. Bill Hagerty under President Trump and Caroline Kennedy under President Obama.

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