Democrats’ Response to Crime: Defund the Police

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U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks Wednesday on the Senate floor regarding law and order:

“A few days ago, the Washington Post published a major report on the explosion of violent crime that has shattered communities across America. This terrible trend is familiar to many of us by now, but the tragic human stories are still shocking.

“In St. Louis, 25-year-old Damion Baker was killed in July in an attempted carjacking while escorting a woman to her car downtown. ‘Damion cannot just be some random number of homicide,’ his mother told reporters. ‘It’s gotta look different.’

“In New Orleans this past March, 20-year-old Shane Brown didn’t come home from work one day. His body was found five days later in a canal, and his family still doesn’t know why he was killed.

“In Birmingham, 13-year-old Jaylon Palmore was on his front porch when he was cut down in a drive-by shooting that police say was targeting someone else. The family home now holds so many painful memories that Jaylon’s parents have decided to sell it and move elsewhere.

“The national media may just be coming around now, but the American people have known for a long time now that the erosion of law and order is a terrible and pressing problem.

“After the nationwide murder rate clocked its largest single-year increase in more than a century in 2020, it climbed even higher last year. A record-high majority of Americans report that crime in their communities is getting worse.

“This is an area where our two political parties, the two sides of the aisle, have totally opposite instincts about the right way forward.

“Republicans are focused on making American communities safer, and we know accomplishing that takes compassion for innocent people, not weak justice for the violent criminals who hurt them.

“Meanwhile, Democrats are focused on making it even harder to secure real justice. They’ve spent two years doubling down on anti-law enforcement rhetoric and putting radical local prosecutors at the center of their plans to make America softer on crime.

“Far-left special interests have poured massive amounts of money into the political campaigns of radical, soft-on-crime prosecutors in major cities from New York to Chicago to Philadelphia to Los Angeles.

“Up to one in five Americans now live in the jurisdiction of prosecutors a Democrat megadonor has handpicked for their willingness to ignore entire categories of criminal law.

“This soft-on-crime campaign has gone to such absurd lengths, communities are taking it upon themselves to push back. Earlier this year, voters in San Francisco showed their radical left District Attorney the door for using their neighborhoods as a proving ground for soft-on-crime experiments.

“And just earlier this month, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives impeached Philadelphia’s liberal District Attorney for ‘misbehavior in office’ after violent crime in the city soared.

“Here in Washington, things are no different. Our colleague the junior Senator from Connecticut, made this crystal clear a few days ago when he kicked off a fresh wave of Democratic calls to defund the police.

“Senator Murphy says that because, in his estimation, ‘60% of the counties in this country’ are friendlier to citizens’ Second Amendment rights than Senator Murphy would like, those communities should be punished by defunding their police forces.

“Fewer resources for peace officers. Less safety for local communities. Unless every county in America kowtows to Senate Democrats’ particular view of the Second Amendment.

“Democrats spent all this past year insisting they don’t support de-funding the police — but here they go, yet again, proposing to do just that.

“One wonders how the American people — the people of Georgia, for example — feel about this renewed push to respond to the violent crime wave by defunding local police. After all, the per-capita homicide and assault rate in the city of Atlanta is now even higher than it is in Chicago.

“Working American families deserve safety in their communities.

“Grieving families deserve the small measure of peace that comes from actual justice.

“And the people of Georgia deserve a check and balance against Washington Democrats’ reckless and radical defund-the-police proposals. Not a rubber stamp.”


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