This week, White House press secretary Jen Psaki unsheathed some of the transparently ridiculous political speaking factors in reminiscence, arguing that Republicans were the ones defunding the police as a result of they didn’t assist the Democrats’ $1.9 trillion boondoggle COVID “rescue” package deal earlier this 12 months.
For starters, voting in opposition to a supplementary federal spending package deal isn’t the identical as proactively slicing legislation enforcement funding or redirecting current cash — which is what progressives who assist “defund the police” motion advocate.
Indeed, not a single greenback of the American Rescue Plan was ever reserved for legislation enforcement spending. State and native officers may, in the event that they selected, allocate among the reduction funding in the direction of legislation enforcement, however they there was no mandate to take action.
If Congress had written a invoice that solely targeted on rising law-enforcement manpower — let’s name it the “Fund the Police Act” — only a few, if any, Democrats would have voted for it.
There isn’t a ballot in existence that reveals even vital assist for the Defund the Police motion amongst conservatives. A nationwide ballot by USA Today/Ipsos from earlier this 12 months discovered that 34 % of Democrats supported the hassle — although many believed it was a straight reduce in funding. Sixty-seven % of Democrats assist redistributing parts of police budgets in the direction of social applications, in contrast with solely 16 % of Republicans.
On the opposite hand, loads of native and nationwide progressives have brazenly referred to as for defunding the cops. When Barack Obama noticed “defund the police” tends to harm Democrats, Rep. Ilhan Omar pushed again, asserting that it was “not a slogan but a policy demand.” Democrats like Cori Bush, Kamala Harris, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and, sure, Joe Biden — who, when requested, “Do we agree that we can redirect some of the funding?” answered, “Yes, absolutely” — all backed defund police efforts to some extent.
Some, not all, have now walked again that assist, however the repercussions at the moment are being felt in areas with spiking crime charges. Black Lives Matter spurred a broad-brush vilification of cops by the Left. And metropolis councils throughout the nation started embracing the concept of defunding cops, together with in Minneapolis, the place George Floyd was murdered. Not one of many cities that toyed with this “new transformative model for cultivating safety” was run by Republicans.
And, as Psaki and different Democrats know effectively, the GOP opposition to Biden’s plan wasn’t grounded on the police funding. No critical particular person believes in any other case.
Yet an accommodating media is dashing to do the Democrats’ job for them, selecting up the apparent lie. “Who Really Wants to Defund the Police?” requested a columnist at Bloomberg. “The GOP should be held accountable for deserting law and order,” wrote The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin. “How Dems are turning the ‘defund the police’ mantra against the GOP,” MSNBC defined.
It’s the form of factor you’d count on to see from state-run media. But then, that appears to be the place we’re at. Up is down. Black is white. And the GOP needs to defund the police.