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JENNY BETH MARTIN: Will Democrats Ever Get A Grip On Rampant Crime Plaguing Their Cities?

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Jenny Beth Martin Jenny Beth Martin is co-founder and national coordinator of the Tea Party Patriots, the nation’s largest tea party organization, and is also chairman of the Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund.
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Most people don’t go to for crime statistics. But they could. If they did, what they’d find would be very revealing — it would show that some of America’s biggest crime-wave cities also happen to be the ones now experiencing mass exoduses. Philadelphia, Chicago, San Francisco, Detroit, New York and Seattle all saw more people migrate out last year than migrated in, and crime had a lot to do with it.

That people are leaving high-crime areas shouldn’t be surprising.

In Philadelphia, gun violence levels have risen to and remained at record highs for three straight years.

In Chicago, crime has gotten so far out of control that a liberal Democrat mayor running for reelection was defeated with just 17% of the vote in a multicandidate primary. That’s the first time in 40 years that a sitting mayor running for reelection has been beaten in the Second City.

In San Francisco, surging crime rates — and the liberal, George Soros-funded district attorney’s failure to prosecute criminals, incentivizing further crime — led to that particular district attorney’s historic recall before he even finished his first term.

In New York, Mayor Eric Adams — elected on a tough-on-crime platform by a population so desperate for relief from surging violent crime that it was willing to think outside the box to elect him — this week called on business owners to insist that customers remove face masks upon entering their businesses: “Do not allow people to enter the store without taking off their face mask … When you see these mask-wearing people, oftentimes it’s not about being fearful of the pandemic. It’s fearful of the police catching [them] for their misdeeds.”

And in Seattle, the recent annual police report showed that violent crime there hit a 15-year high last year.

It’s not just individuals and families moving out because of the surging crime. Businesses are, too, for the same reason.

In Portland, Walmart has announced it will close all its stores within the city limits, and will offer new jobs at stores outside the city limits to the more than 500 employees its decision will displace.

In Chicago, McDonalds’ CEO says he’s having trouble recruiting executives to work in the company’s downtown national headquarters office. Boeing, Citadel, and Caterpillar, too, have announced they’re leaving Chicago.

In Philadelphia, meanwhile, McDonalds is closing locations in downtown areas.

And in Seattle, the city settled for $3.65 million with locals who sued the city after its police abandoned them to rioters in the summer of 2020.

What do these cities all have in common? They’re all run by liberals. And they’ve all been run by liberals for the better part of the last 60 years.

And over the last several years in particular, of course, they’ve also been subject, in one form or another, to “defund the police” pressure from left-wing activists, which exploded in the wake of the 2020 death of George Floyd at the hands of police in Minneapolis — a city which, for the record, has also seen a not-at-all-surprising surge in violent crime as its police force has shrunk by 40%.

It’s important to recognize that the “defund the police” isn’t just about money. it’s about a culture of policing, and whether police forces are actually allowed to do the work necessary to protect a community.

Progressive policing policies always run into their biggest opponent — reality. Reality is unbending. It’s predictable. It’s consistent. If criminals think they can get away with looting, they will loot. If they think they can get away with carjacking, they will carjack.

Which brings us to the District of Columbia. D.C. experimented with defunding the police. The result was predictable, and predicted. Crime surged, and it’s only gotten worse — as D.C. police statistics show, homicides are up 31%, motor vehicle theft is up 110% and all crime is up 25% over this same period a year ago.

Yet, even in the wake of this surging crime, the D.C. City Council, in its infinite wisdom, chose to double down by revising the city’s criminal code to REDUCE the penalties for many crimes, including carjackings. That was too much for even a liberal like Mayor Muriel Bowser, who vetoed the measure. But the City Council was so determined to make its stand that it overrode her veto, by a vote of 12-1.

Luckily for the tourists visiting and the residents of the District of Columbia, home rule — instituted in 1973 — does not override the Constitution, which gives Congress ultimate control over the District. The House has already voted to overturn the City Council’s action, the Senate did so Wednesday (by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 81-14, no less) and President Joe Biden, clearly worried about the negative political consequences of surging crime being laid at the feet of Democrats — has declared he will not veto the measure if it reaches his desk.

If Biden signs the resolution, it will be the first time in 32 years that Congress has overturned a D.C. law.

The United States is built on the concept that ours is a nation of laws. Being a nation of laws is totally incompatible with having utter lawlessness rule our nation’s urban areas, and especially our nation’s capital city.

Jenny Beth Martin is Honorary Chairman of Tea Party Patriots Action.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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