Protect Our Police PAC, which seeks to elect candidates who support the police and are tough on violent crime, has reportedly raised nearly $1 million in funds since its founding 2 and a half months ago.
The PAC was set up in July amidst ongoing protests and calls to defund the police and has now endorsed more than 40 candidates, Fox News originally reported.
We’re retired police who couldn’t stand by and watch spineless politicians turn their backs on the police.
— Protect Our Police PAC (@PolicePac) July 9, 2020
Nick Gerace, the PAC’s founder, told the Daily Caller that over 80 candidates have sought endorsement from Protect Our Police. Most of the candidates that the PAC has endorsed are Republicans, but they have heard from Democrats and have endorsed Democrat Josh Shapiro for Attorney General in Pennsylvania.
“We are not a partisan PAC, and I wish more Democrats would reach out and support a pro-police platform focused on law & order, but the reality is that right now this is unfortunately a partisan issue for many,” Gerace, who is a retired Philadelphia police officer, told the Daily Caller. “Support[ing] adequately funded police departments that help to maintain law and order in our communities shouldn’t be a partisan issue.”
The group’s rise comes after months of protests calling to defund the police, a movement that has received the support of some state and local governments.
New York City passed a budget June 30 to defund the police department by $1 billion amidst protests, and the Minneapolis City Council voted unanimously in June to dismantle the city’s police department in favor of a “community-based public safety model.” Seattle’s City Council passed a package of budget cuts to their police department, including cutting their police department’s budget by over $1 million. (RELATED: Minneapolis City Council Complains About Crime Spike Months After Voting To Abolish Police)
Gerace said that they are focusing on state and local levels because that’s where they believe they can have the biggest impact. The group believes that despite the “anti-police climate,” there is still a strong grassroots base that supports the police.
“This is a grassroots movement,” Gerace said. “If you turn on the news, it can feel like the media is completely against the police and that all cops are bad. That narrative is completely false, and one of the best ways people who still back the blue can channel their energy is by supporting candidates who will do the same.”
“We’re proud of our slate of endorsed candidates, and we’re doing everything in our power to channel the grassroots energy and donations we’ve received into real change at the ballot box,” he added.