A public park advocacy group filed a federal lawsuit Monday accusing Obama Presidential Center organizers of pulling an “institutional bait and switch” by reneging on its original planned purpose of building an official presidential library in historic Jackson Park.
The Chicago City Council approved an ordinance in 2015 for the parkland to be leased to the Obama Foundation for the purpose of housing former President Barack Obama’s official presidential library, the Chicago Sun-Times reported on Tuesday.
But operations have since changed. Obama now plans to use the parkland to build a $500 million personal museum and monument dedicated to his person. The National Records and Archives Administration will operate his presidential library somewhere else.
The lawsuit, Protect Our Parks, Inc. filed against the city of Chicago and the Chicago Park District, argues public parkland is “prohibited by law” from being given to a private entity such as the Obama Foundation for private use. . .
The complaint accuses the City of Chicago of dealing with the Obama Foundation “in a classic Chicago political way, known as a short con shell game, a corrupt scheme to deceive and seemingly legitimize an illegal land grab, one that will endure for centuries to come, regardless of future changing public park needs and increasingly consequential environmental conditions.” (Read more from “Obama’s Presidential Center Sued for Corrupt Scheme” HERE)