Welcome to the Reader's morning briefing for Monday, January 30, 2016.
Thousands of protestors and dozens of volunteer lawyers flooded into O'Hare International Airport over the weekend after President Donald Trump issued an executive order that temporarily banned immigrants and refugees from seven different Middle Eastern and African countries. Mayor Rahm Emanuel stopped by the airport Sunday evening to show his support for the protesters. "I want to thank all the lawyers here who are assuring people that when they come, what they're met with is support, security and safety," he said. "That's who we are, and that is what we're doing." He also encouraged Chicagoans to host refugees and immigrants from around the world. "My family and I will host DREAMers attending Chicago Public Schools and Chicago City Colleges for a meal, a conversation, and a recognition and celebration of all that unites us, rather than what divides us," Emanuel said in a statement.
Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, also slammed Trump's controversial immigration ban. "The world is watching as we abandon our commitments to American values," Cupich said in a statement released Sunday. "These actions give aid and comfort to those who would destroy our way of life. They lower our estimation in the eyes of the many peoples who want to know America as a defender of human rights and religious liberty, not a nation that targets religious populations and then shuts its doors on them." [Sun-Times] [DNAinfo Chicago]
Chicago Police Department superintendent Eddie Johnson revealed that he's waiting for a kidney transplant after he almost passed out at a news conference Friday. Johnson has suffered from kidney issues for many years, and many fellow cops and Chicagoans have expressed interest in being a living donor for the police chief. [Associated Press via ABC News]
CPD also revealed that it will be using new technology in the fight against gun violence. NBC News reports that some of the new methods include: a "war room"-like office staffed with analysts who will translate data for changes to deployments and long-term strategy"; more ShotSpotter sensors that alert police to the sound of gunfire; and more surveillance cameras in public places, using new software that identifies the areas most likely to experience shootings and analyzing the data alongside information from existing software that identifies people most likely to be shooters and/or victims. The new strategies will allow the CPD to be "more proactive and focus on the right people in the right place and at the right time," according to police chief Eddie Johnson. [NBC News]
Amy Blagojevich, the 20-year-old daughter of former Governor Rod Blagojevich, penned an 1,511-word open letter to former President Barack Obama slamming him for not commuting her father's 14-year prison sentence. "You've broken my heart once again, and you've betrayed the concept of justice like many other heartless individuals before you," the Northwestern University student wrote. "Turns out you are just like the rest—selfish and spineless." [Sun-Times]
Illinois senators Tammy Duckworth and Dick Durbin both have a say on whether or not to confirm Trump's cabinet picks, and DNAinfo Chicago is tracking their votes. Only four of the president's picks have come up for a confirmation vote so far, and Duckworth and Durbin have agreed on all of them, voting to confirm Trump's picks for secretaries of defense and homeland security and ambassador to the United Nations, but voting against Mike Pompeo, his pick for director of the CIA. Up next: controversial picks including Senator Jeff Sessions for attorney general and Betsy DeVos for secretary of education. [DNAinfo Chicago]