Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot was booed at the annual fundraiser for the plumbers’ union on Sunday over her vaccine mandate forcing city workers to report their vaccination status or be placed on unpaid leave.
Video captured the moment Lightfoot was met with the resounding sound of boos as she was introduced to speak at the annual event to raise money for the political action committee.
The Plumbers Union Local 130 was the first union to endorse Lightfoot during the 2019 runoff election against Toni Preckwinkle.
The video shows Jim Coyne, the union’s business manager, introducing Lightfoot to an eruption of boos as she took the podium.
‘I knew that was going to happen,’ a person off camera is heard saying.
‘That’s f**king brutal,’ another said in the video.
Video recorded the moment when Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot was booed off stage at a fundraising event for the plumbers’ union over the weekend
Lightfoot was introduced by Jim Coyne, the union’s business manager, when a loud eruption of boos broke out as she took the podium on Sunday
An anonymous attendee told The Chicago Sun Times that the mayor was ‘booed off the stage.’
They said that Lightfoot: ‘Spoke for less than a minute. And there was a resounding booing throughout the room. Almost deafening, … I was sitting at the table with a bunch of plumbers. They’re like, `We’ve never heard that before here.’ … Clearly, their membership is not with her. … They were calling her names. It was bad.’
Pat McCarthy, the plumbers’ union’s recording secretary, noted Lightfoot was booed but insisted that the disapproval did not come from the union.
‘I was there when she was speaking. There were a couple of people in the corner that booed. But it was nothing significant. And it didn’t disrupt the event at all,’ McCarthy said.
‘I would have to suspect whoever was booing at that event was not a member of this local. … We respect her and we have no problems with the mayor.’
Union President Jim Majerowicz was downstairs counting money for the Bears’ game versus Tampa Bay Buccaneers pool when Lightfoot took the stage.
‘I didn’t hear nothin’ … I was in a different room, so I can’t say,’ Majerowicz said. ‘You’re telling me some shocking stuff. I find it hard to believe.’
The plumbers’ union was the first union to endorse Lightfoot in 2019. The union’s recording secretary Pat McCarthy said: ‘whoever was booing at that event was not a member of this local’
But the mayor has been met with opposition from city workers- especially from police- for her vaccine mandate.
Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) President John Catanzara told Fox News that many first responders, firefighters and labor unions strongly oppose the mandate.
Catanzara has urged police officers to file for exemptions to get vaccinated or simply ignore the order.
Lightfoot announced in August that all of the more than 30,000 city workers in Chicago would be required to be fully vaccinated by October 15 and threatened them with vague ‘consequences’ if they did not comply.
After major pushback, Lightfoot loosened restrictions and agreed to allow city workers to remain unvaccinated until the end of the year as long as they submit to testing at their own expense twice a week.
A group of city workers suing is both Lightfoot and Illinois Governor JB Pritzker over Chicago’s vaccine mandate. The 130 city workers named in the lawsuit are asking for a temporary restraining order to put the mandate on hold.
But did insist that all city workers fill out the city portal form confirming their vaccination status.
The argument over Chicago’s vaccine mandate will be decided by a federal judge on Friday.
Several Chicago aldermen have filed notice to force a special meeting of the City Council this week to repeal Lightfoot’s vaccine mandate for city workers.
The effort of the Chicago aldermen is being lead by Silvana Tabares who partnered with aldermen from the Northwest and Southwest Side, which have high populations of city workers.
‘To my colleagues who want to get more people vaccinated, I agree (with you),’ Tabares tweeted. ‘But what makes more people willing to get vaccinated? 50 alders who pass a policy based on collaboration and inclusion, or 1 mayor who has stormed off from the bargaining table & issue.’