Sneed: Trump’s ‘Feds’ tweet was about public safety, ex-aide says
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Trump took a shot.
Rahm and Rauner took the bullet.
The big question?
Is President Donald Trump’s Tuesday tweet about sending in “the Feds” to clean up the “horrible carnage” in Chicago based on bad feelings or bad business?
• Translation: Is the Trump tweet the result of an anti-Trump rally last year resulting in a protest at the University of Illinois at Chicago campus?
• Explanation: Or was the Trump tweet based on a major business investment: ownership of Chicago’s prestigious Trump Tower?
“No,” said Corey Lewandowski, Trump’s former campaign manager who helped organize the Chicago rally, who is now a powerful Trump lobbyist and TV commentator.
“It’s the obligation of our government to make sure our people are safe,” he told Sneed.
“Although violence is climbing everywhere, Chicago is the nation’s most violent city.
“It’s out of control.
“Multiple weekends when dozens of people are being shot! Good grief,” Lewandowski added.
“It’s true Mr. Trump made a significant investment in Chicago, but this isn’t about politics. It’s about people.”
Lewandowski is upping the ante he made on a bet with former Obama chief campaign strategist David Axelrod.
“Hey, Axe owes me big time,” Lewandowski chuckled.
“When Axe and I were both at CNN we made a bet,” he said. “Axe bet Mr. Trump would receive less black votes than Mitt Romney when he was running for president — which was less than 1 percent.
“I bet Axe that Mr. Trump would receive more black votes than Romney. Well, I won because Trump garnered 8 percent.”
• The deal: “I bet Axe a giant steak at the best restaurant in Chicago. But now I’m going to up the ante! When I come to Chicago Feb. 15 to participate in a discussion at Axelrod’s Institute of Politics at the University of Chicago, I’m going to make him pay up by taking me to a steak dinner at Trump Tower!
“Hey, I love the Axe. He’s been great to me.”
• The addendum: Watch for Lewandowski to be the keynote speaker for the Sangamon County Republicans Lincoln Day Dinner next month in Springfield.
Running with Rauner . . .
There was no announcement.
Sneed hears the day before Gov. Bruce Rauner gave his State of the State address Wednesday, he took seven hours out of his day to attend the memorial service in West Chicago of Bloomingdale Policeman Raymond Murrell, who was killed in the line of duty Jan. 19.
• Backstory: Rauner wanted to quietly pay his respects to heroic first responders who give the ultimate sacrifice.
“It’s something he does and usually without advance warning,” a Sneed source said. “He just wanted to do it. [Officer] Murrell was killed in a car crash while responding to a crime in progress and paid with his life.
“And he was only 27 years old. So tragic,” the source added.
Running with Rauner II . . .
Vroom doom: State troopers are always chuckling about the ancient VW bug Rauner likes to personally drive (in addition to his motorcycle) which has been affectionately nicknamed the “traveling trash can” and/or the “rolling trash box.”
J.B. & Diana . . .
Billionaire businessman and philanthropist J.B. Pritzker, who is eyeing a gubernatorial run on the Dem ticket, was spotted at a national gathering in Washington, D.C., Wednesday sharing his Pritzker Consortium expertise on early childhood development policy.
• So guess who else was there? Ironically, Illinois First Lady Diana Rauner, who is also an expert in the field of early childhood development, was also in attendance, opting to attend the gathering by skipping her hubby’s State of the State address.
Sneedlings . . .
Ah, a little Sneedling has arrived! Congrats to Tara and Mitch Dudek, Sneed’s former beloved assistant, on the arrival of their first child, Mitchell Richard Dudek IV, also known as “Mack,” who was born Tuesday weighing in at 7 pounds, 11 ounces. His father reports “Mack can’t wait to see the newsroom.” . . . Today’s birthdays: Ellen DeGeneres, 59, Wayne Gretzky, 56, Vince Carter, 40, and happy belated birthdays to Vince Bartelment, 61, Paddy O’Fegan, 55 and Deputy Mayor Andrea Zopp, priceless.Tweets by @sneedlings