Exclusive — Vulnerable Democrat Kurt Schrader Says ‘No One’ is Trying to Defund the Police, Despite the Push from Inside His Own Party
An exclusive video obtained by Breitbart News shows vulnerable Democrat Rep. Kurt Schrader (OR) saying he does not believe there is still an effort to defund the police — not only in Portland but across the country — after the Democrats have made numerous attempts to do so.
In the video, a questioner asks Schrader about the movement to defund the police. The person said he’s “curious if [Schrader] will denounce efforts to defund the police. Crime is up, I think, almost 533 percent.” Schrader said he is “not for defunding the police at all.”
The questioner asked again if the congressman will “condemn the efforts then, to defund the police.” Then the congressman said, I don’t know if anyone is doing that.” Hearing this, the questioner shot back and asked, “No one?” It appears that Schrader said “no.”
Despite Schrader saying no one is looking to defund the police, last week in Portland, Oregon, the Police Association Executive Director Daryl Turner blew up Democrats for embracing the “Defund the Police movement” after all 50 members of the Portland Police Bureau’s Rapid Response Team resigned. In the statement released on Facebook, he said the resignation highlighted “that the priorities of our elected officials have failed.”
Axios also reported that “Democrats, in private and public, are warning that rising crime — and the old and new progressive calls to defund the police — represent the single biggest threat to their electoral chances in 2022.” In Portland alone, the homicides are up 533 percent, which means the city is on track to have more than 1,000 shootings by the end of this year.
Schrader’s Democrat colleagues in the House of Representatives have even gone as far as to say the police should be defunded, reimagined, or abolished.
So-called “squad” member Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO) earlier this year “applauded” the “historic” voting in St. Louis, which was meant to defund the police. The St. Louis mayor has proposed that the city should “cut $4 million from the St. Louis Police Department and eliminate 98 vacant officer positions.” After the vote, Bush said in a statemen that, “Today’s decision to defund the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department is historic. It marks a new future for our city.”
Another “squad” member Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), as recently as last week, said she still supports having a “radical re-imagining” of law enforcement, even though crime is surging across the nation, including having anti-police attacks on law enforcement. Pressley said, “I support a radical re-imagining of community safety and public safety, which means reallocating and not further investing in a carceral state.”
Additionally, “squad” member Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), in an April tweet that still remains on the platform, said that there should be “no more policing, incarceration, and militarization,” since law enforcement “can’t be reformed.” She also said the “aggression and violence” to Daunte Wright “wasn’t an accident” and “Policing in our country is inherently & intentionally racist.”
Schrader’s office has not answered when asked by Breitbart News if he thinks these Democrat colleagues of his are people, or if they are “no one” — and his staff has not answered when asked if the congressman agrees with what these Democrats said. Additionally, his office did not respond to Breitbart News when asked if he disagrees with their position and if he wants to condemn their calls to defund the police or what he has done to stop them.
Interestingly enough, Schrader, who said “no one” is trying to defund the police, also voted in March to “defund the police.” Schrader voted to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021, with the majority of House Democrats, on an almost party-line vote of 220-212. The Act was described by Republicans as a plan that would engage in “defunding the police.”
Furthermore, in a nonpartisan analysis, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said that the bill for which Schrader voted would cost more than 18,000 police departments around the country significant funds. “More than 18,000 law enforcement agencies nationwide would be affected by the bill’s requirements,” the CBO said in a letter to top congressional Republicans on the matter:
All would incur costs for training and for data collection, management, and reporting. Using information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and law enforcement associations nationwide, CBO expects that more than 6,000 agencies would either need to upgrade or to invest in new technology to comply with the new reporting requirements.
In addition to all of this, Schrader voted against the $1.9 trillion coronavirus package backed by most congressional Democrats and President Joe Biden back in March. While voting against this plan is not akin to defunding the police, the Biden White House — amid the rising crime wave across America and the recent election results in New York City where pro-police Democrat Eric Adams came in first place in the first round of voting over candidates that backed defunding police — has falsely argued that voting against the bill, as Schrader and one other House Democrat did, is like voting to defund police.