Around the same time the Biden White House started trying to make its case that it’s Republicans and not Democrats who are defunding local law enforcement, Democrats in the crime-ridden city of Oakland, California voted to cut another nearly-$20 million in funding from the city’s police budget.
Oakland City Council president Nikki Fortunato Bas, a Democrat, was unapologetic over the vote, calling it “historic” and portraying it as a positive step for the future of the city.
“I think yesterday was very historic,” she told ABC7 News. “We’ll be standing up a program called MACRO for alternative crisis responders, to handle mental health issues. We will be having our department of transportation handle issues that police typically handle, blocked driveways, auto tows.”
She also hinted that more cuts could be coming in the near future, telling the local news outlet that “because police have the largest share [of the budget], there could be more redistribution.”
Understandably, Oakland Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong was not amused. During a press conference Monday, Armstrong made one of the most powerful and passionate cases against taking money away from police department budgets, saying that it was easy for politicians to reduce lives hurt and lost down to numbers while police officers had to see first-hand the devastating real-world consequences of powerful public figures playing woke games while people died in the streets:
“I’m challenged by the decisions that were made on Thursday around the budget for the city of Oakland, particularly for the Oakland Police Department,” Chief LeRonne Armstrong said in a news conference.
“We see clearly that crime is out of control in the city of Oakland, and our response was for less police resources … when City Council members — the majority of them have voted to defund this Police Department. That additional $17 million will have an impact,” he added.
“We already have a tough time responding to the high number of calls that we get. This will make it tougher, having less officers in the field, particularly for marginalized communities,” he added.
“Saturday night, I went out to a
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