Senate Candidate Mandela Barnes Falsely Claimed ‘Police Don’t Prevent Crimes from Happening’ in 2020

Mandela Barnes, Democratic nominee for lieutenant governor of Wisconsin, speaks during a c
Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Radical Wisconsin Senate Democrat Mandela Barnes falsely claimed in 2020 that law enforcement does not protect American citizens from being victims of crime, a video unearthed from the Republican National Committee reveals.

“Police don’t prevent crimes from happening,” Barnes falsely stated on Real Talk with Henry Sanders. “We don’t live in a surveillance state nor would you want to.”

“It’s not like cops are showing up to stop something before it happens,” Barnes said.

“They are to respond,” Barnes said, “and try and solve crimes, and if you look at the number of crimes that don’t get solved, you may be shocked to learn that number.”

Evidence shows police do prevent crimes from occurring. According to National Bureau of Economic Research study published in 2020, “Each additional police officer abates approximately 0.1 homicides.” Another study in 2005 by the Journal of Law and Economics shows that more deployed police officers leads to dramatically less crime.

Barnes’ condemnation of law enforcement follows his statement in a 2018 video that “reducing prison populations is now sexy.”

“Now that criminal justice reform and reducing prison populations is now sexy — it’s now a thing that leading candidates are talking about… Because ten years ago people would have run away from this issue,” he said.

The radical senate candidate, who is challenging Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), has also advocated for allowing felons to retain the right to vote and defunding “over-bloated” police departments.

But crime is a major issue for Wisconsinites. According to a MacIver Institute, between 2019 and 2020, murders increased 62 percent, and violent crime rose 8.85 percent in Wisconsin.

The Wisconsin Department of Justice reported that in 2021, there were 57,000 offenses of theft, over 29,000 offenses of assault, over 18,000 offenses of motor vehicle theft, over 13,000 offenses of aggravated assault, over 10,000 offenses of burglary, over 2,300 offenses of rape, and 70 offenses of human trafficking.

The crime wave in Wisconsin is something that Barnes is personally worried about. According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Barnes has “averaged more than 13½ hours of security protection a day — including weekdays, weekends and holidays — at a daily cost to the state of $660 for patrol officers’ wages. That’s more than 10 times the number of hours as his predecessor.”

Not only does Barnes oppose police funding while his personal security is paid for by taxpayers, he believes in abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), permitting driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants, and giving in-state college tuition to illegal immigrants. He favors an entirely government-run healthcare system, eliminating the Senate filibuster, packing the Supreme Court, and passing the Green New Deal. Barnes also derided small business owners as “selfish” for wanting to serve customers during the pandemic.

According to a Wednesday poll, Johnson took the lead over radical Barnes by one point, after Johnson and Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), chair of the National Senatorial Committee, have hammered Barnes for his soft-on-crime policies. Barnes’ favorability rating has also sunk. Just 38 percent approve while 41 percent disapprove of the Democrat, down from 43-27 percent in August.

Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter @WendellHusebø. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality.


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