Monday, May 29, 2023
HomeOpinionsDems got their woke-up call with Lori Lightfoot's loss

Dems got their woke-up call with Lori Lightfoot’s loss

Heart be still, there are signs Democrats are finally getting the message that voters are sick to death of crime. Make that some Democrats. 

A brouhaha is brewing on at least three fronts, and the good news is that the White House is on the right side this time.

President Biden stunned many in his own party by supporting a Republican-led House bill to overrule a nutty plan in Washington, DC, to reduce penalties for homicides, carjacking, and other violent crimes in the nation’s capital. 

Biden’s move, which was a flip-flop from an earlier position, came despite his support for home rule and statehood for DC.

Trying to square that circle, the White House noted that the move to lighter sentences was opposed by Mayor Muriel Bowser but passed over her veto by the city council. 

“He believes in keeping the 700,000 residents in DC safe. And so he’s taking that action because it’s coming to him,” press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre argued Friday. 

Unless you’re a sucker for claims of coincidence, you know the shifting political sands had everything to do with Biden’s about-face.

Gov. Kathy Hochul
Gov. Kathy Hochul was almost upset by GOP candidate Lee Zeldin in last year’s mayoral election.
Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

He’s been coldly nonchalant about rising crime for most of his presidency and his sudden concern came only after usually reliable blue-state voters turned against top Dem incumbents because of the bloodshed. 

The highest profile cases include Gov. Hochul, who was almost upset by GOP candidate Lee Zeldin, who focused like a laser on crime.

Then came Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who was thrashed in her bid for a second term. 

Chicago has been awash in bloodshed throughout Lightfoot’s tenure, suffering 700 murders or more in each of the last three years.

Its homicide rate is five times higher than in New York City, which had 438 murders last year despite having 6 million more people. 

Polls showed that upwards of 70% of Chicago voters ranked crime and public safety as either their first or second most important issue, but Lightfoot had a tin ear and insisted she and her police superintendent wouldn’t change course.

So voters changed mayors

A black lesbian, Lightfoot blamed her loss on racism and gender prejudice.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot became the first incumbent to lose the mayoral election in 40 years.
Getty Images

Asked by a reporter if she had been treated unfairly, she said, “I’m a black woman in America. Of course.” 

Oddly, her race, gender and sexual orientation didn’t stop her from winning in a landslide four years ago.

She’s a victim only of her own arrogance and incompetence. 

Although murders and shootings in Chicago are down so far this year, overall serious crime is still higher by a staggering 52%, including a 143% surge in auto theft, according to the latest police statistics. 

To be sure, the voters’ verdict is far from complete.

Lightfoot finished third in the nonpartisan race, getting just 17% of the vote in a field of nine, with the top two finishers scheduled to face each other next month. 

The leader, former school superintendent Paul Vallas, got 34% of the vote while running on an anti-crime agenda and promising to hire an additional 2,000 police officers.

Runner-up Brandon Johnson got 20% while promising to raise taxes and cut the police budget. 

In addition to being hopelessly permissive on crime, Johnson is also a tool of the Chicago teachers unions, which are among the nation’s most radical.

The unions carried out an 11-day strike over pay and other issues in the fall of 2019. 

Bail rumble in Albany 

While the Chicago runoff is a clear referendum on crime and progressivism, New York Dems continue to have their own civil war in Albany — with a twist. 

David Soares, the county district attorney, is battling progressives in the Legislature over extremely lenient changes they made to bail and other laws in 2019.

And although race is usually an unspoken subtext in crime debates, this time it’s front and center because Soares and the legislative leaders of both chambers are black. 

Albany County District Attorney David Soares
Albany County District Attorney David Soares holds a news conference introducing proposed legislation to amend bail reform laws.
Hans Pennink

The battle was joined when word leaked that Soares, representing a prosecutors’ association, planned to condemn the 2019 changes and demand they be rolled back.

For daring to tell truths legislators didn’t want to hear, Soares was reportedly disinvited the night before he was scheduled to speak. 

Although his prepared remarks were eventually read into the record, the sneaky maneuver let the criminal coddlers avoid a public spat they would have lost. 

That’s because of the compelling way Soares framed his argument.

For example, talking about the bail law changes, he brought facts to show the claims about the old law’s disproportionate impact on the poor were not true. 

“The perception that many people were being held on minor charges on low bail amounts was absolutely false,” Soares was prepared to say. 

His most explosive comments focused on race, as when he contrasted the stated reasoning behind the changes with the actual results three years later. 

“These reforms have had their most devastating impact on black and brown communities,” he wrote. “If you take an honest look at the data — the increases in crime, the victims of those crimes, and the location of the most violent crimes, the connection is quite clear.” 

Of course, there have been previous efforts by other Dems to free the party from the far left’s “defund the police” movement. Mayor Adams made Gotham’s violent crime surge a focus of his 2021 campaign and has made progress in reducing murders and shootings, though the city has a long way to go to restore public confidence. 

But Adams and his ilk have been the exceptions, with Biden and other so-called moderates surrendering leadership to the loonies and loudmouths who proclaim police the problem and criminals the victims. 

Will this time be different? Do you believe in miracles?

Unexpected Bibi allies

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in an interview with Wall Street Journal columnist Walter Russell Mead at a Hertog Forum event, made a number of fascinating statements, including this one: “Christian Zionism preceded Jewish Zionism. It’s doubtful whether Jewish Zionism would have succeeded without the centuries of Christian Zionism, especially 19th century Christian Zionists in Britain and the United States.”

‘First’ in scandal

They’re No. 1! 

Joe and Hunter Biden are making history in all the wrong ways.

Noting the probe of the president over his handling of classified documents and the probe of Hunter over tax and other issues, Fox News spells it out: “The Bidens have made presidential history for being the first father-son duo to simultaneously — but separately — be under federal investigation.”

Source link


Most Popular

Recent Comments