It’s been two years since kente-wearing Democrats took a knee in an effort to hijack the George Floyd uprisings for their own electoral benefit. Now, ahead of the 2022 midterms, those same Democrats are doing their darndest to distance themselves from the defund movement and the anti-police sentiment that took the streets in the summer of 2020.
As Republicans push crime as a key midterms issue, the Democrats’ offensive strategy has been a desperate attempt to out-blue-lives-matter their opposition. President Biden set the tone at the State of the Union, that the answer is not to “defund the police, it’s to fund the police.” House Democrats proceeded to pass the Invest to Protect Act, which would give $300 million over five years to qualifying local law enforcement departments. (The Senate has passed its own version of the bill, but the legislation has not yet reached Biden’s desk.)
According to a New York Times report, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (D.C.C.C.) sent a memo in March instructing Democrats that they needed to proactively defend themselves against Republicans falsely tying them to the defund movement. After testing multiple strategies, the D.C.C.C. advised that “a clear statement opposing defunding the police as well as a statement laying out what Democrats do support when it comes to crime and policing” was the most successful approach. While the Invest to Protect Act is not yet law, the bill gives Democrats a concrete way to demonstrate their support for the police.
Authoring the Senate version of the bill has helped shield Georgia senator, Reverend Raphael Warnock, who is running in a close race for reelection, from claims he’s out to get the police. In a roundtable discussion hosted by Fox News Digital, Republican challenger Herschel Walker alleged, “The guy I’m running against, he’s demonized police officers by calling them names…The police don’t trust him.” Yet even Fox admitted that targeting Warnock as soft on crime “may not be so easy,” given Warnock’s work on police-funding legislation.
What’s most annoying about Republicans using the defund movement against Democrats is that it’s pretty obvious the party never really supported the idea of reallocating police funds for community services anyway. Democrats have long been paranoid about being seen as weak on crime. Historically, they are the party that gave us the 1994 crime bill, which Biden authored and former president Bill Clinton signed into law. Sure, there may be some outliers, like Representative Cori Bush, who has been one of the few congressional Democrats who hasn’t backed away from using the slogan. But when it comes to supporting law enforcement, protecting private property, and deploying police against communities during unrest, Democrats do, in fact, back the blue. As House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said during a 2017 town hall, the Democrats are a capitalist party. And if you’re a party of capitalism, then you’re also arguably a party of the police, because police are the protectors of private capital and racial dominance.