Missouri Democrat Representative Cori Bush is a strong supporter of defunding the police that protects people in her home state. She is an equally big supporter of private security for herself. Many people are criticizing her for spending $70,000 on private security over the last three months. In an interview with CBS, Bush admitted that she was willing to spend even $200,000 on private security to ensure her own safety.
In her interview, Bush claimed that she was the recipient of death threats. She accused people who criticize her for spending tens of thousands on her own private security wish for her death. Bush said that she hires private security because “my body is worth being on this planet right now.”
Calling herself a “black woman who puts her life on the line,” Bush insinuated that “white supremacists” are okay with her being “taken out of here.” Bush also said that police officers have threatened her life. She insisted that her private security is not to keep her safe from the people but from the “racist attempts” made on her life.
“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 are 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, 10, 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 because we’re trying to save lives,” Bush said.
Bush spent more than $54,000 for “security services” from RS&T Security Consulting, LLC between April 15 and June 28. She also paid $15,000 to a man named Nathaniel Davis for security services. These payments were detailed in her campaign filings with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC).
Missouri Attorney General Republican Eric Schmitt criticized Bush’s statements. He called it “hypocritical” and a “slap in the face” of crime victims in the state. He accused Bush of not prioritizing the safety of her constituents while ensuring that she was protected. Homicides in Bush’s district of St. Lewis saw a spike in 2020.
“St. Louis had a 50-year high in homicides last year, Kansas City had an all-time high in homicides last year — those two cities are actually moving forward with the funding police departments. So this isn’t just rhetoric anymore, this is reality here in the heartland, and Cori Bush’s comments are incredibly irresponsible… We’re never going to defund the police here in Missouri, not now, not ever if I have anything to do with it,” Schmitt said to New York Post.
A poll conducted by Rasmussen Reports found that American voters disagree with Bush’s demand for defunding the police by a 2-to-1 margin. Sixty-three percent disagree with the politician; 77 percent believe that their police officers are excellent; 66 percent do not believe that most officers are racist; 57 percent agreed that the “new Democrats in Washington attack and degrade all law enforcement officers.”
Meanwhile, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) released a new advertisement with Bush’s statements being the focus. The ad shows rising crime across America as Democrats want to defund the police and also want to maintain private security for themselves.
“We want to thank Cori Bush for reminding everyone [that] Democrats are the party of Defund the Police… While violent crime ravages communities, Democrats are spending campaign dollars on private security for themselves,” NRCC spokesman Michael McAdams in a statement.
Defunding the police
“Defund the Police” is a movement aimed at diverting government funds from police departments to non-policing forms of public safety like youth services and social services. The slogan became more common in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd and subsequent Black Lives Matter protests.
According to The Washington Post’s Fatal Force database, 999 people were shot and killed by the police in 2019. White people accounted for 424 of the deaths, blacks 251, and Hispanics 168.
Whites, who accounted for 60.3 percent of the U.S population in 2019, made up 42.44 percent of the deaths. Blacks, who accounted for 13.4 percent of the population, made up 25.12 percent of the deaths. For Hispanics, who were 18.5 percent of the population, was 16.8 percent of the deaths.
The disproportionately higher fatality rate of black Americans could be the result of a significantly higher number of arrests and violent crimes in the demographic. For example, black Americans get arrested at 2.6 times the per capita rate of other races in the country; they commit robbery and murder at 8.1 times and 6.3 times, respectively.
In an interview with Fox News, Republican Representative Burgess Owens said that the lawmakers who wanted to defund the police end up creating communities of “misery.”
“When you look at [Cori Bush’s] district, there is no traditional family. There’s no business — the only faith that’s there is faith in government, not God… This is the American culture, the American strain of Marxism,” Owens told Fox News in an interview.
Former Arizona police officer Brandon Tatum believes that there is a bigger agenda behind the Defund the Police campaign.
In an interview with The Epoch Times, Tatum states that the agenda is to “completely destroy and dismantle local police departments.” That would allow the federal government to control law enforcement in the country. With the federal government in control, it will be able to enforce unconstitutional mandates more easily, such as gun laws and vaccine mandates.
“I believe that the government has a lot more leverage federalizing these agencies, and that’s the end goal… I don’t believe it has anything to do with racism, police brutality … That is a talking point to push an even bigger agenda,” Tatum said.
On May 14, billionaire George Soros donated $1 million to the Color of Change PAC. It is the largest political contribution he has made in the 2021 election cycle. Color of Change features a petition on its website that supports defunding the police.
“We must begin to envision the society that functions for ALL of us and we must begin by divesting from and dismantling the systems that unjustly harm Black people,” the petition reads.
Some states, however, are taking action against the campaign to defund the police. In May, Georgia Governor Brian Kemp signed into law HB 286 that prohibits governing authorities from cutting down the police budget by more than five percent annually or “during a rolling five-year period.”