CHICAGO — The barbs that have flown between President Donald Trump and his family and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot haven't prevented either side from engaging in occasional niceties.
Lightfoot in May called Eric Trump to express her support, according to text messages obtained by the Chicago Tribune through a Freedom of Information Act request. The mayor's call occurred as civil unrest surged across the country following the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police. As the city was cleaning up from widespread looting, the younger Trump texted Lightfoot, remarking on a call he describes as "incredibly kind."
"I have passed along your support to our team and residences. Please know, I and we truly appreciate you," Eric Trump texted.
In a July text, Eric Trump said he was thinking about her.
"I only imagine how difficult the situation is but know we are all rooting for Chicago . . . I hope you are well. Eric T."
Lightfoot referenced the text last month after another round of looting and Trump's disparaging reference during a Wisconsin speech to Lightfoot raising bridges over the Chicago River to stop "hordes of rioters from ransacking the city."
"One of the bridges we put up is near Trump Tower because our protesters and vigilantes would love nothing more than to attack Trump Tower," Lightfoot responded at the time. "So those little notes that I get from Eric Trump after every time that we've protected that property, if they want us to stop, say the word."
Lightfoot frequently throws barbs at Trump, who regularly invokes Chicago to bolster his "law and order" campaign theme.
Although the mayor has sparred with Trump, she also has made attempts to work him and his family. Before she was sworn in as mayor, Lightfoot had a meeting in Washington, D.C., with Ivanka Trump, the president's daughter, and a White House adviser.
But the relationship between Lightfoot and the Trumps coarsened over time. Lightfoot ripped Ivanka Trump last year for a tweet about Chicago violence and slammed her husband, Jared Kushner, for his comments asserting a federal stockpile of medical supplies as not being for the states to use.
Trump tweeted in May during the unrest that "when the looting starts, the shooting starts," which prompted Lightfoot to accuse the president of destabilizing the nation.
"He wants to show failures on the part of Democratic local leaders, to throw red meat to his base," Lightfoot said at the time. "His goal is to polarize, to destabilize local government and inflame racist urges. We can absolutely not let him prevail. And I will code what I really want to say to Donald Trump. It's two words. It begins with F and it ends with U."