Matt Cartwright ‘Absolutely’ Open to Defunding the Police

Rep. Matt Cartwright, D-Pa., speaks during a campaign rally with Vice President Joe Biden and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton Monday, Aug. 15, 2016, in Scranton, Pa. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)
Mel Evans/AP Photo

Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA) said during a town hall Thursday he would “absolutely” be open to defunding local Pennsylvania police departments.

One local citizen said during the event he searched through the Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, budget and found the town spends more on its police department than urban housing and other categories.

The citizen asked if there’s a “way to push money around” instead of the money “being wasted” on police vehicles, weaponry, and other law enforcement expenditures.

Cartwright responded, “Absolutely yes,” there is a way to budget money to defund the police.

“That’s one of the biggest issues in representative democracy is how you spend tax money,” Cartwright added.

The Pennsylvania Democrat cited former Vice President Joe Biden, noting a budget reveals a government’s values.

“Don’t talk about your values, show me your budget,” Cartwright said. “Then I’ll tell you what your values are.”

Cartwright asked rhetorically, “Can changes be made? Yes, they can.”

The observation was rejected by the Congressional Leadership Fund (CLF).

“Defunding the police went from the extreme fringes of the left to Matt Cartwright’s lips in less than a week,” CLF Communications Director Calvin Moore said in a statement on Friday.

Cartwright’s alleged embrace of defunding police could create a backlash for Pennsylvania voters as a recent poll found some 64 percent of voters oppose defunding the police.

Cartwright represents one of the 13 congressional districts President Donald Trump claimed during the 2016 presidential election by more than six percent, but a Democrat currently represents the district.

“Matt Cartwright’s support for defunding the police risks both the lives and safety of hardworking people in Pennsylvania and proved once again that he’s just too far-left for his constituents,” Moore added.

Sean Moran is a congressional reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.

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