Amid Historic Spike in Murder Rate, Biden Administration Pushes Soft-on-Crime Agenda

WASHINGTON, D.C.U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding the rule of law:

“Last week, Washington D.C. was again the site of illegal political violence from the radical left.

“A mob of environmental extremists set upon the Department of the Interior. They shoved through blocked doors. They hurt the police and security personnel who tried to hold the line. These radicals put one law enforcement officer in the hospital.

“Political violence and attacks on government buildings are flat-out wrong, no matter who is perpetrating them or what they claim to believe.

“That’s why it is puzzling that last week’s incident attracted so little attention and condemnation. The White House was directly asked about the day’s demonstrations just a few hours after the violence and the break-in occurred. Instead of condemning the radicals, the Biden Administration praised them.

“The White House press secretary was asked about the protests, multiple hours after the violence and the break-in, and said, ‘Of course we’re listening to advocates and people who have been elevating the issue of climate for decades. They have important voices.’

“That’s how the Biden Administration officially described the demonstrators who put a cop in the hospital. ‘Important voices.’

“Just absurd, Mr. President. But those weren’t just regrettable comments. They capture the politicized and selective approach to law-enforcement that increasingly defines the Democratic Party.

“Last year, our nation saw a 30% jump in homicides — the biggest jump in the murder rate in modern history. The worst spike in the homicide rate in modern American history.

“The head of the National Center for Health Statistics says it was the worst increase in more than 100 years — since at least 1905.

“Actually, he went on to say that even 1905 wasn’t comparable, because that was likely a clerical matter. So the experts don’t really know the last time the murder rate shot up this much.

“But we know it was before the average American family had electricity or indoor plumbing.

“Responding to this terrible trend should be very simple. It should be a no-brainer for elected officials at every level. More and better resources… for more and better policing… for more and better community safety.

“Instead, liberal local officials across the country from City Halls and City Councils to here in Congress have gotten caught up in the radicalism of ‘Defund the Police.’ 

“As one left-wing House member put it, ‘Not only do we need to disinvest from police but we need to completely dismantle’ her local police department.

“As another declared, ‘Policing in our country is inherently and intentionally racist.’

“One news story from last weekend reported, ‘A crowd of 100 people wreaked havoc in downtown Portland, Oregon, this week – smashing storefront windows, lighting dumpsters on fire and causing at least $500,000 in damage – but police officers didn't stop them. Portland Police Bureau officials say that's because of legislation passed by Oregon lawmakers this year, which restricts the tools they can use to confront people vandalizing buildings and causing mayhem.’

“So while all of this is percolating, what is the Department of Justice focused on?

“Where is the U.S. Attorney General training his firepower?

“Here’s the answer: Two weeks ago, Attorney General Garland published a special memorandum directing federal law enforcement to focus specifically on parents who are dissatisfied with ‘woke’ school boards and far-left indoctrination.

“The worst spike in the murder rate in over a century, and the Attorney General wants Main Justice laser-focused on… parents who are asking questions about their kids’ curriculum. It’s beyond parody.

“To be clear, I’ve never offered anything but condemnation for violence and threats in the political square. But local law enforcement is fully capable of handling isolated incidents where crimes are committed. There is absolutely no reason for Attorney General Garland to pull this J. Edgar Hoover act on America’s parents.

“But these strange and warped priorities are defining the Biden Administration’s approach. Soft on crime; heavy on indulging far-left fads.

“Currently deadlocked in the Judiciary Committee is the nomination of Rachael Rollins, a would-be U.S. Attorney who has a national reputation for being soft on crime during her time as a prosecutor.

“In her current role as a district attorney, the nominee has said that prosecutors in her jurisdiction should decline to prosecute a whole laundry list of crimes.

“Just decline to prosecute them.

“From shoplifting to trespassing to drug possession with the intent to distribute, Ms. Rollins wants her county to be a place where these crimes get free passes.

“And the Biden Administration rewards this with a big promotion.

“Mr. President, support for equal justice, support for law enforcement, and support for the innocent people they protect go hand in hand.

“It’s time for the Biden Administration to get serious about the rule of law.”


Related Issues: Law Enforcement, Senate Democrats