Democrats Have a Messaging Issue on Defunding Police as Democrat-Run Cities Boost Funding

People walk down 16th street after “Defund The Police” was painted on the street near the White House on June 08, 2020 in Washington, DC. After days of protests in DC over the death of George Floyd, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser renamed that section of 16th street "Black Lives Matter …
File Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Democrats in the House of Representatives are faced with a messaging issue, as Democrat-led cities across the country are starting to boost their police funding back to original levels as crime rates rise.

“One year after the movement to ‘defund’ law enforcement began to upend municipal budgets, many American cities are restoring money to their police departments or proposing to spend more,” the Wall Street Journal reported.

The report indicated Democrat Bill de Blasio, the mayor of New York City, said he “would reinstate $92 million for a new precinct after scrapping the project last summer.”

The mayor of Baltimore also recently proposed a $27 million increase in their budget. This comes after the mayor led an effort last year as a city councilman to cut the police budget by $22 million.

In California, the city of Oakland, “lawmakers in April restored $3.3 million of the $29 million in police cuts, and the mayor is now proposing to increase the department’s budget by $24 million. This is after there is a rise in homicides and a rise in attacks on Asian-Americans.”

Los Angeles, which a Democrat mayor also runs, “proposed an increase of about $50 million after the city cut $150 million from its police department last year,” according to the Journal.

More from the WSJ:

In the nation’s 20 largest local law-enforcement agencies, city and county leaders want funding increases for nine of the 12 departments where next year’s budgets already have been proposed. The increases range from 1% to nearly 6%.

Many U.S. cities are led by Democrats who supported protesters’ calls to defund the police—a term that activists have used in different ways, including to push for simply shrinking the size of police forces but also shifting resources from law enforcement to social services. The demonstrations, led by Black Lives Matter and allied groups, followed the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer last year.

But city officials have found it difficult to keep police budgets down after seeing a rise in crime over the past year, with murder rates up by double digits in many cities. In the last three months of 2020, homicides rose 32.2% in cities with a population of at least one million, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Quarterly Uniform Crime Report. Law-enforcement officials and criminologists say pandemic stress and a police pullback amid protests are likely contributors.

Michael Nutter, the former mayor of Philadelphia and a Democrat, told the Journal, “It’s hard to have a serious conversation with folks about cutting a police department’s budget when crime is up.”

However, Democrats in the House of Representatives have continued to push their radical defunding of the police agenda.

Far-left Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO), who is a member of the “squad,” recently applauded St. Louis for a move to “eliminate millions in police funding.” She also called the decision “historic.”

Bush continued to say, “For decades, our city funneled more and more money into our police department under the guise of public safety while massively underinvesting in the resources that will truly keep our communities safe.”

“The city frequently ranks as among the most dangerous cities in America and suffered 194 homicides in 2019,” according to Fox News.

In Apil, another far-left member of the so-called “squad,” Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), called police offices “inherently & intentionally racist” in a tweet.

She went on to say, “Daunte Wright was met with aggression & violence.” She went as far as to say she is “done with those who condone government funded murder,” adding there should be “No more policing, incarceration, and militarization.”

“It can’t be reformed,” she claimed to end her tweet.

National Republican Congressional Committee Spokesman Mike Berg simply told Breitbart News, “Democrats are the Party of Defund the Police.”


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