WEST LOOP — Mayor Rahm Emanuel scoffed at Republicans in Congress who say they can't affirm both gun control and immigration reform, calling it "a cop-out" Wednesday.
"Congress can do both of these," Emanuel said Wednesday, addressing background checks for gun purchases and comprehensive immigration reform. "And it's a cop-out, in my view, for those in Washington to say they can't do both. ... Both of them are in the country's interest."
Emanuel has argued forcibly for gun control, at times citing the city's struggle with gun violence. On Wednesday, at a news conference at Malcolm X College, he said he had just come from a naturalization ceremony at the Harold Washington Library where 100 immigrants from 33 countries became U.S. citizens.
"It's a mosaic," Emanuel said. "All different languages, but one common experience and one common goal. They've come to America, in my view the most American of American cities.
"I do believe the United States Congress must pass comprehensive immigration reform because it's in our values," he added.
He said even school students can focus on more than one subject at once.
"My kids do math and history," Emanuel said. "Try doing both. It's a cop-out, and Washington has continually copped out in meeting the country's challenges."