Rahm Emanuel is angry, and prosecutors in Chicago won’t like Rahm when he’s angry. In fact, Emanuel’s so angry over the bizarre end to the Jussie Smollett hoax case that he kept talking over ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on Good Morning America earlier today. “What made them all of sudden say,” Emanuel asked, “‘You know what? On second thought, this is enough’?”
“Do you think it was a corrupt decision?” Stephanopoulos asked in return. Emanuel defers to ABC’s legal experts, but … come on, man:
Still fuming from the stunning decision by prosecutors to drop charges in the “hoax” attack case against “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel blasted the move Wednesday, saying all the evidence police collected against the TV star should be unsealed.
“He’s saying he’s innocent and his words aren’t true,” Emanuel told ABC News chief anchor George Stephanopoulos on “Good Morning America.” “They better get their story straight. This is actually making a fool of all of us.” …
Emanuel suggested it was unconscionable for prosecutors to dismiss the case after Smollett agreed to forfeit the $10,000 bond he put up and complete “two days” of community service at Operation PUSH, the non-profit Chicago community organization founded by the Rev. Jesse Jackson.
“Let’s get to the bottom of this. Let’s find out what happened,” Emanuel said. “Especially [in] a city that embraced not only him as an actor but more importantly the values of being whoever you are, whoever you love, whatever your background is, you have a home here. He took that, turned it around and tried to self-promote himself. And the fact is, he’s walking around with no sense of contrition, no sense of remorse, and the fact is also the state’s attorney is saying he’s actually guilty of this hoax, and he’s walking around saying, ‘No, I’m innocent.'”
Stick around for Dan Abrams’ legal analysis, in which he’s just as dumbfounded as everyone else. “What exactly was the deal here?” Abrams asked, and Michael Strahan’s just as non-plussed. How can you make a deal with prosecutors that involves no allocution to a crime of some sort — especially after prosectors went to the grand jury and came back with a 16-count indictment? Abrams notes that some observers thought that was “overkill” at the time, but swinging from overkill to surrender without any significant change in the case is even more bizarre.
Emanuel certainly thinks so, too. He wants an investigation into the city’s state attorney office (the equivalent of a district attorney) to get to the bottom of the deal. Emanuel also wants the case unsealed to get all of the evidence out into the open, which might happen anyway if the FBI and US Postal Service decide to charge Smollett in the earlier mail-threat hoax. The outgoing mayor has no intention of dropping the issue while he’s still in office, and maybe even if he’s not.
Smollett won’t like Emanuel when he’s angry, and neither will the state’s attorney office. But I gotta admit, Emanuel-when-he’s-angry is starting to grow on me.