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Pritzker Assures Chicago’s Readiness for DNC in the Midst of Cease-Fire Demonstrations

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker (Credits: WEVV)

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker (D) assured that Chicago is ready to host the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in August, despite concerns about potential large-scale protests regarding the Biden administration’s handling of the Israel-Hamas conflict.

Scheduled for August 19 to 22, the convention will officially nominate President Biden as the party’s presidential candidate. It’s anticipated that protesters will rally against Biden’s response to the Gaza conflict, demanding a comprehensive cease-fire.

Addressing critics’ worries, Pritzker played down concerns during an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” with Dana Bash on Sunday.

Democratic National Convention (Credits: Politico)

“Let’s understand that Joe Biden is actively advocating for peace in the Middle East and working to end the hostilities between Israel and Gaza, ensuring humanitarian aid reaches those affected,” he stated. “When it comes to protests, it’s Joe Biden standing for peace, while it’s the Republicans who, frankly, would escalate tensions in the Middle East.”

Pritzker highlighted recent protests by groups advocating for a cease-fire, which led to the closure of a major interstate near Chicago’s O’Hare Airport last week as part of a nationwide movement. He praised the swift action of the Chicago Police in clearing the highway compared to other cities across the country.

“Our Chicago Police Department efficiently managed to clear the highway faster than any other city in the United States. They are well-prepared for the Democratic Convention,” he emphasized.

“We believe in the freedom of speech, and we’ll allow people to protest and express their views,” Pritzker continued. “But we’re also committed to ensuring safe access and egress for all individuals in our state.”

JB Pritzker (Credits: NBC News)

The heightened unrest surrounding the war has drawn parallels to the tumultuous 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago, marked by protests against the Vietnam War and met with forceful police responses.

However, Pritzker shifted focus to the successful 1996 convention held in Chicago, describing it as one of the best in his lifetime. “We anticipate a convention more aligned with that experience,” he remarked. “In the Democratic Party, we respect people’s right to protest and have their voices heard.”

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