Cruz Calls for Cities Who Withhold Police to Be Held Liable to Property Owners
Republican senator to introduce legislation after police protection withheld during riots
Republican Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) is introducing legislation to make local governments liable for damage to private property if they deliberately withhold police protection during rioting and violent unrest.
It was reported on Sunday that President Donald Trump had rejected the request of Minnesota's liberal governor Tim Walz for federal help addressing the destruction caused by recent riots in the Twin Cities.
Gov. Walz asked for a $500 million federal bailout to address damage incurred in his state during the Black Lives Matter riots following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
On July 2, Walz petitioned President Trump to declare parts of Minnesota a "major disaster" due to the extent of the damage to public infrastructure.
However, much of the damage has been blamed on local officials failing to tackle the protests before they exploded into violence.
Sen. Cruz tweeted that he is introducing legislation to make local governments accountable for such damage caused.
"Minnesota Dems willfully allowed Minneapolis to burn & then blamed the police whom they demonized," Cruz wrote on Twitter.
"Now, they want the fed govt to pay the bill.
"I’m introducing legislation to make local govt liable to private property owners if officials deliberately withhold police protection."
Minnesota Dems willfully allowed Minneapolis to burn & then blamed the police whom they demonized. Now, they want the fed govt to pay the bill.— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) July 12, 2020
I’m introducing legislation to make local govt liable to private property owners if officials deliberately withhold police protection. https://t.co/fZZCYgekMI
The Washington Examiner reported of Walz’s request: “Walz, a Democrat, requested that Trump declare Minnesota a ‘major disaster’ zone in a request to the Federal Emergency Management Agency on July 2 after more than 1,500 buildings were damaged by looting and rioting in the wake of Floyd’s death, totaling over $500 million in damages.”
Walz’s office released a statement reading, “The Governor is disappointed that the federal government declined his request for financial support,” as The Daily Wire reported.
"As we navigate one of the most difficult periods in our state’s history, we look for support from our federal government to help us through."
Jenna Ellis, a senior legal advisor for Team Trump, said of Trump’s action: “Wise.
"You want to defund police and let the woke mob run wild, do it on your own dime, Gov.
"You should have asked the President for help BEFORE you incurred this much damage.”
Days after George Floyd died, and rioters ran rampant through the city of Minneapolis, the Twin Cities Pioneer Press wrote of Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey:
A close examination of the events, including interviews with more than two dozen elected officials, activists, business owners and residents, suggests at least some of the destruction resulted from a breakdown in governance.
The mayor and other local leaders, many of them relatively new to their roles, failed to anticipate the intensity of the unrest or put together an effective plan to counter it.
Frey has struggled to regain the confidence of Minneapolis residents.
He has been slammed by business owners for not doing enough to protect their property.
He has been pilloried by the police for ordering the abandonment of the precinct house.
Frey said he ordered the evacuation due to an “imminent” threat of danger.
He stated that the “symbolism of a building cannot outweigh the importance of life, of our officers, or the public.
"We Could not risk serious injury to anyone.”
Speaking with CNN’s Alisyn Camerota in early June after the Minneapolis City Council had stated that it intended to “dismantle” the city’s police department, Minneapolis City Council President Lisa Bender was asked what a citizen should do if an intruder broke into their house in the middle of the night and there were no police to call.
Bender suggested that the opportunity to call the police “comes from a place of privilege,” adding that those citizens should “step back and imagine what it would feel like to already live in that reality where calling the police may mean more harm is done.”
“Do you understand that the word ‘dismantle’ or ‘police-free’ make some people nervous?” Camerota asked.
“For instance, what if in the middle of the night, my home is broken into? Who do I call?”
Bender answered, “Yes, I mean, I hear that loud and clear from a lot of my neighbors, and I know, and myself too, and I know that that comes from a place of privilege because for those of us for whom the system is working, I think we need to step back and imagine what it would feel like to already live in that reality where calling the police may mean more harm is done.”