It’s been over a year since Republicans have used accusations of Democrats looking to “defund the police” in campaign commercials and literature – successfully invoking all of the decades-old negative stereotypes about them. A number of candidates attribute this to the Democrats losing House seats in a number of close races in 2020 as it forced many of them to play a defensive position that would cost votes either way, even though Republicans themselves are guilty of doing this by voting against Capitol Police funding.
Now it’s gone beyond the campaign cycle. Even though no serious Democratic candidate for office has openly endorsed this idea, it’s a question they’ll inevitably have to face from reporters, even after they’ve been elected. Returning to the White House on Thursday night, President Biden, who has repeatedly denounced the “Defund the Police” slogan was once again pressed on the matter – asked if anyone in the party actually supported this idea. Rather than being caught off guard, President Biden gave the perfect response that puts it all in perspective.
When asked if there were people in his party who were looking to defund the police, he quickly shot back: “Are there people in the Republican Party who think we’re sucking the blood out of kids?” It’s probably the starkest reminder of why both parties aren’t even close to being the same and that the leadership of the GOP desperately needs to rein in the crazies on its side of the aisle, though that’s a much taller order now than it was back in 2016. It’s yet another reason why Republicans shouldn’t be rewarded with either house of Congress in 2022.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making