President Joe Biden will address crime in America and detail how his administration plans to keep America safe this week – after largely avoiding the topic since becoming president.
Biden will speak Wednesday about his “crime prevention strategy,” according to the White House. The president will also “meet with stakeholders to discuss ways the … administration is acting to keep our cities and neighborhoods safe.”
The administration has focused much of its talks to topics like recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, the economy and Biden’s efforts to “build back better.” These discussions have come amid a rise in violent crime across the country, a topic the president has been reluctant to focus on up until now, Politico reported.
Violence broke out at Juneteenth celebrations across the country over the weekend in just the latest example of the spike in crime.
“The F.B.I. does not release full statistics until September, but homicide rates in large cities were up more than 30 percent on average last year, and up another 24 percent for the beginning of this year, according to criminologists,” The New York Times recently reported.
While Biden hasn’t focused on the rise in crime in America, he’s pushed for lawmakers to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2021. The president also signed legislation in May addressing the reported increase in hate crimes, particularly against Asian Americans, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Still, the administration has danced around the surge in violence. White House press secretary Jen Psaki, when asked at a press briefing in May about the uptick in violent crimes, dodged the question and blamed it on “gun problems.”
“This past weekend there were more than a dozen mass shootings across this country. 4000 more people [were] shot and killed by guns in 2020 compared to the year before. Is there a crime problem in this country?” a reporter asked.
“Well, I would say certainly there is a guns problem. And that’s something the president would say,” Psaki responded before touting Biden’s decision to increase funding for “community violence prevention programs.” (RELATED: Biden Goes All In On Calls For Extreme Gun Control)