Former Vice President and 2020 Democratic nominee Joe Biden claimed Tuesday that President Donald Trump is “the only person calling to defund the police.” In the aftermath of the tragic death of George Floyd, there’s been loud anti-law enforcement rhetoric and calls to defund local police departments.
“I not only don’t want to defund the police, I’m the one calling for 300 million dollars more for local police for community policing,” Biden said. “I also think we should add social workers and psychologists to help police on 9-1-1 calls.
He continued, “The only person calling to defund the police is Donald Trump. Look at his budget. He calls for cutting police funding for state and local by $400 million. Once again, he’s pathological.”
With less than 60 days until the election and key states showing the two candidates neck in neck in many polls, Biden has recently come out of his home in Delaware, where he was conducting voter outreach virtually, to visit those battleground states.
President Trump has made clear he doesn’t support the ‘defund the police’ movement and has even threatened to pull federal funds from cities that adopt such extreme policies. Moreover, the Trump administration has pledged additional funding to law enforcement in many states amid growing civil unrest and riots.
Biden, however, has reportedly flip-flopped on the issue and is said to even have once asserted he would support redirecting funding from law enforcement agencies to support other community services.
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Rep. Patrick McHenry Announces Retirement, Adding to Congressional Exodus
Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., has declared that he will not seek re-election, becoming the latest in a growing list of lawmakers departing from Congress. McHenry, a close ally of former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, stated that he believes “there is a season for everything,” signaling the end of his tenure in the House. Having served since 2005, McHenry is the 37th member of Congress to announce they won’t seek re-election in 2024.
In a statement, McHenry reflected on the significance of the House of Representatives in the American political landscape, calling it the “center of our American republic.” He acknowledged the concerns about the future of the institution due to multiple departures but expressed confidence that new leaders would emerge and guide the House through its next phase.
The departure of McHenry and others comes against the backdrop of political shifts and challenges within the Republican Party. The GOP has faced setbacks in recent elections, including fallout from the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
Internal strife and disagreements, exemplified by the rebellion against McCarthy, have characterized the party’s dynamics. The GOP’s approval rating stands at 30%, with a disapproval rating of 66%, reflecting the challenges and divisions within the party.
As McHenry steps aside, questions loom over the fate of open seats in the upcoming election. The nonpartisan Cook Political Report identifies five open House seats as potential Democrat pickup opportunities, while none are listed for the GOP. The departures raise concerns about the party’s unity and ability to navigate the evolving political landscape.
With a total of 20 departing Democratic legislators and 10 Republicans, the changing composition of Congress adds complexity to the political dynamics leading up to the 2024 elections. As McHenry emphasizes a hopeful view of the House’s future, the evolving political landscape will determine the impact of these departures on the balance of power in Congress.
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