Democratic Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon Falsely Claims Philadelphia Never Defunded Police

Screenshot via YouTube/House Committee on the Judiciary

Michael Ginsberg Congressional Correspondent
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Democratic Pennsylvania Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon claimed during a Tuesday hearing that the City of Philadelphia never cut funding from its police department, despite the fact that its City Council decreased spending following the 2020 death of George Floyd.

The Philadelphia City Council reduced police funding from $741 million in Fiscal Year 2020 to $727 million in FY2021, a decrease in $14 million. In addition, the City Council increased funding for arts and social services programs by $45 million. Mayor Jim Kenney had initially proposed a $19 million increase.

The City Council voted to hold police funding steady at $727 million in FY2022, despite the fact that Philadelphia set a record for most murders in city history in 2021 with 561. The city has seen 96 murders so far in 2022, a 9% increase over 2021. (RELATED: Former Mayor Michael Nutter Writes Scathing Op-Ed After Philadelphia DA Larry Krasner Denies There’s A Major Crime Problem)

City Council President Darrell Clarke described the spending cut as “an important step towards” creating a “New Normal,” while Councilman Derek Green claimed that the budget showed that the City Council “recognizes that Black Lives Matter.”

However, according to Scanlon, Philadelphia actually increased police funding in the last two years.


“I have to protest the efforts by our Republican colleagues to once again ignore the truth and repeat false talking points about my community and others. Instead of grappling with the truth, we’ve heard members of this committee and subcommittee say today that Philadelphia, which forms part of my district, has reduced funding for its police and to go so far as to bolster these lies by citing specific numbers. Let me just be clear: Philadelphia has not defunded its police,” Scanlon claimed.

“To the contrary, funding has increased each of the past two years to help address the twin pandemics of COVID-19 and gun violence. So I would urge my colleagues across the aisle to stop reimagining the truth and get serious about how this country can actually address the national surge in gun violence. Because this is a serious problem that demands serious policy solutions and serious people, not mindless repetition of political talking points.”

Scanlon’s office did not respond to the Daily Caller’s request for comment on her claim.

Scanlon was recently the victim of a carjacking outside Franklin Delano Roosevelt Park in South Philadelphia. Her home district, Pennsylvania’s Fifth, includes South Philadelphia, as well as Chester and Delaware counties. Delaware State Police later arrested five suspects driving the stolen vehicle.