By overwhelming margins, young voters are telling us that the U.S.’ unconditional support of Netanyahu’s war crimes is policy they DO NOT support.@POTUS must use all diplomatic tools to facilitate a #CeasefireNOW, the release of all hostages, and an end to the siege on Gaza. https://t.co/kUHJtWb264— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) November 20, 2023
I’m going to make sure I have security because I know. I
have had attempts on my life and I have too much work to do there, too many
people that need help right now for me to allow that. So, if I end up spending
$200,000, if I spend 10 more dollars on it – you know what? I get to be here to
do the work. So suck it up and defunding the police has to happen, we need to
defund the police and put that money into social safety nets.
In an opinion piece in USA Today in 2021 upon the occasion of Juneteenth, Bush wrote
...slavery quite literally lives on today through our system of incarceration and policing. The 13th Amendment explicitly permits slavery "as a punishment for crime." It is no wonder then that Black people and Black communities across this country are devastated by yet another system of bondage- policing and criminalization.
Slavery, bondage, and policing- or as Bush would put it, "redundancy." In November of 2020
James Clyburn, the House majority whip and Democratic “kingmaker” who played an outsized role in Joe Biden’s successful presidential run, has said the “sloganeering” of the Black Lives Matter protests and other social justice efforts this summer might have hampered them at the polls.
Clyburn, a Black South Carolina congressman and prominent figure in the civil rights movement, likened the “defund the police” mantra of certain activists to civil rights efforts in the 1960s, when some public support for the movement’s objectives was eroded by radical messaging.
While recognizing the harsh political impact of the slogan- for which Republicans still tar Democrats- Clyburn did not name names, as he should have. Few Democrats endorsed the defund the police movement nor the label as much as has Bush, who has called the USA "racist AF" (classy!). Along with Representative Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Bush is the original Defund the Police member of Congress and to this day defends not only defunding the police but also the slogan itself.
There is a parallel between ending the support for Israel the President has given and withdrawing ending funding for police. They are both bad policies. "Defund the Police' represented, and still represents, a mine field for Democrats, while we'd have to be psychic to know for certainty the political impact of a reversal of course by Biden.
Presumably, the move would be initially popular in districts such as that of Bush and very unpopular in districts with many Jewish voters, or sensible ones. However, as the devastating repercussions of withdrawal of support became clear, the effect would be terrible for the President and other Democrats.
President Biden is- politically- stuck between a rock and a hard place, damned if he does and damned if he doesn't, and all other applicable cliches. Representative Bush, wrong on the policy and politics about policing, rationalizes her faulty values by pointing to sentiment among young voters. In such times as this, though, it would be wise to fall back upon the principle of doing the right thing, as the President has done thus far.