The people of the Chicago and Cleveland areas voted Anita Alvarez and Tim McGinty out of office in primaries on Tuesday. Alvarez had been the state’s attorney for Cook County, Ill., since 2008, and McGinty had been the prosecutor for Cuyahoga County, Ohio, since 2013. The two entered the national consciousness for their roles in the cases stemming from the police killings of Laquan McDonald, 17, and Tamir Rice, 12, two African-Americans shot by officers in Chicago and Cleveland, respectively.

Both killings were captured on camera, and both cases sparked widespread accusations of injustice because of the ways the investigations were handled. In the Rice case, the police officer who shot the boy was not indicted, and McGinty is alleged to have influenced the grand jury’s decision to return no indictment.

The McDonald case in Chicago is ongoing. Activists accused Alvarez of deliberately delaying the investigation, and they targeted her on Twitter with a #ByeAnita hashtag.

Supporters of police reform now are focused on the next steps after the defeats of Alvarez and McGinty at the ballot box.

Sonali Kolhatkar, host and executive producer of “Uprising” and a Truthdig columnist, spoke with journalist and writer Sarah Macaraeg about Alvarez’s loss to Kim Foxx. They discussed the influence of Black Lives Matter on current political races, Chicago’s “particular style of activist,” the impact of social media on voter canvassing, and what Macaraeg called Alvarez’s “egregious” record on criminal justice. “She’s out of office, but look at the damage that’s already been done,” Macaraeg said.

Listen to the full “Uprising” interview here.

–Posted by Emma Niles

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