Top Biden Adviser: Trump & Republicans ‘Defunded the Police’
Cedric Richmond blames guns and GOP for police budgets being slashed
A top adviser to Democrat Joe Biden has claimed that President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans "defunded the police."
Biden administration senior adviser Cedric Richmond attempted to shift the blame away from Democrats when pressed on the spike in violent crime hitting major American cities.
Speaking during an appearance on “Fox News Sunday” with host Chris Wallace, Richmond attempted to defend mayors and council members of Democrat-run major U.S. cities where police budgets were severely slashed.
Cities that defunded their police departments have been suffering widespread surges in violent crime since last summer.
However, Richmond instead blames guns and said that the GOP should take responsibility for defunding law enforcement under Trump's watch.
“Part of it is the plethora of guns that are flooding the streets of this country, and that’s something that the president wants to deal with,” Richmond said when asked about the skyrocketing crime rates.
“He knows the toll that violence takes on families, and especially gun violence and what it’s doing over the last 18 months in this country,” the top Biden adviser continued.
Wallace then played a clip of Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) blaming a “war on police” and decreased prosecution for a swell in police retirements and a surge in violent crime.
Graham also slammed Biden’s proposed plan of dealing with the crime spike.
“Senator Graham doesn’t have a clue,” Richmond responded.
“Let’s talk about who defunded the police,” he continued.
"When we were in Congress last year trying to pass … an emergency relief plan for cities that were cash-strapped and laying off police and firefighters, it was the Republicans who objected to it.
“And in fact, they didn’t get funding until the American Rescue Plan, which our plan allowed state and local governments to replenish their police departments and do the other things that are needed.”
“Republicans are very good at staying on talking points of who says defund the police, but the truth is, they defunded the police,” Richmond said.
"We funded crime intervention and a whole bunch of other things."
The “Defund the Police” movement erupted last summer amid widespread protests and riots over the death of George Floyd.
Black Lives Matter activists and Democratic lawmakers pushed for local governments to redirect funding from law enforcement into social programs aimed at those living in poverty.
In the wake of the movement against police, police departments have hemorrhaged officers as crime has spiked in numerous major American cities. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) released a statement on Sunday blasting Democrats for the crime surge.
“Over the past year, Democrats’ sustained movement to defund, dismantle, and demonize our cops is taking a toll on our communities,” McCarthy told The Daily Wire.
“It has manifested in the crime crisis our nation faces today, yet President Biden remains soft on crime and silent on Democrats’ radical policies.”
“Supporting the police and striving for safe communities should not be partisan objectives – they are shared values of the American people,” McCarthy added.
“It’s troubling that Democrats continue to vilify the police at a time when they truly need our support.”