Psaki casts GOP as celebration of ‘defund the police’ after slogan backfires on Democrats

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki accused Republicans of being the celebration of defunding the police on Monday — after “Defund the Police” grew to become a rallying cry of progressive activists in 2020 and broken Democrats’ enchantment with reasonable voters.

Republicans voted in opposition to President Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, which was signed in March, although it included $350 billion for state and native governments that could possibly be used for native police.


“Something one of the advisers said this weekend, Cedric Richmond, he said Republicans defunded the police by not supporting the American Rescue Plan,” Fox News‘ Peter Doocy requested Psaki on Monday. “But how is it that that is an argument to be made when the president never mentioned needing money for police to stop a crime wave when he was selling the American Rescue Plan?”

“Well, the president did mention that the American Rescue Plan, the state and local funding, something that was supported by the president, a lot of Democrats who supported and voted for the bill, could help ensure local cops were kept on the beat in communities across the country. As you know, [it] didn’t receive a single Republican vote. That funding has been used to keep cops on the beat,” Psaki stated.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki speaks during a press briefing at the White House, Monday, June 28, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

White House press secretary Jen Psaki speaks throughout a press briefing on the White House, Monday, June 28, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

“At the time, it was sold that local police departments might have pandemic-related budget shortfalls, not we need to keep cops on the beat because there’s a crime wave,” Doocy stated.

“I think that any local department would argue that keeping cops on the beat to keep communities safe when they had to, because of budget shortfalls, fire police is something that helped them address crime in their local communities,” Psaki stated, later including that “it was a pretty good bill and piece of legislation.”

Biden advisor Cedric Richmond railed in opposition to Republicans on “Fox News Sunday.”

“Let’s talk about who defunded the police. When we were in Congress last year trying to pass a rescue plan — I’m sorry, not the rescue plan but 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,” Richmond said.

“So look, Republicans are very good at staying on talking points of who says defund the police, but the truth is, they defunded the police, we funded crime intervention, and a whole bunch of other things,” he added.


More than seven in 10 voters assume crime is on the rise nationally amid a backdrop of escalating crime charges in main American cities and FBI warnings for local law enforcement to organize for will increase over the summer season.

That’s in keeping with a Fox News ballot launched on May 26 and performed May 22-25. The ballot discovered that in comparison with final 12 months, majorities assume crime is growing each nationally (73 p.c say there’s “more” crime), in addition to of their native communities (54 p.c).

A protester holds up a homemade sign that says,

A protester holds up a home made signal that claims, “Defund the Police” with the Manhattan Bridge behind them as they carry out a peaceable protest stroll throughout the Brooklyn Bridge. (Photo by Ira L. Black/Corbis by way of Getty Images) (Getty Images)

Republicans (83 p.c) are extra seemingly than independents (73 p.c) and Democrats (62 p.c) to say crime is up.  Equal proportions of Hispanics (75 p.c), Blacks (74 p.c) and Whites (72 p.c) assume crime has risen nationally in comparison with final 12 months.


One 12 months following the loss of life of George Floyd and the extraordinary nationwide protests and calls to defund police departments that adopted, the ballot reveals most individuals have belief in regulation enforcement.  

Seventy-two p.c of registered voters have “a great deal” (36 p.c) or “fair amount” (36 p.c) of belief and confidence in police and regulation enforcement.  Twenty-seven p.c have “not very much” or “none at all” in the case of confidence in these carrying the blue.

Fox News‘ Victoria Balara contributed to this report.

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