'Defund the police' loses big in Democratic cities nationwide

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Voters in Democratic cities nationwide Tuesday soundly rejected measures to defund the police and elected candidates who campaigned strongly on issues of crime and law enforcement.

Eric Adams, a former NYPD captain who easily won the New York mayoral race, had presented a nuanced message regarding issues of law enforcement. He had spoken out against injustices in the department and advocated for Black officers when he was a cop, but he did not support defunding police by reallocating money from law enforcement to other programs.

Eric Adams listens as President Joe Biden speaks during a meeting on reducing gun violence at the White House on July 12, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Voters in Minneapolis rejected Minneapolis Question 2, a proposed amendment to the city’s charter that would have replaced the Minneapolis Police Department with a Department of Public Safety.

The initiative would have taken out language that included minimum funding requirements for the department and would have divided control of public safety between the mayor and City Council.

The question failed 56% to 44%, according to the results released by the Minnesota Secretary of State’s office. The measure needed 51% of voter approval to pass.

Minneapolis residents reelected Democratic Mayor Jacob Frey, who also opposed the measure, despite his top two challengers supporting it.

Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo addresses the media regarding the proposed charter amendment last week in Minneapolis. 
(Elizabeth Flores/Star Tribune via AP)

In the Seattle mayoral race, former City Council President Bruce Harrell maintained a sizable lead over current City Council President M. Lorena González, who supported cutting the Seattle police department budget by half.

“I’m not a status quo politician. They want the homeless issue addressed with a sense of urgency, they want effective policing … biased-free policing, so we feel very good about the results,” Harrell told local FOX 13.

Police responded to a third shooting incident Tuesday evening in the 200 block of Yesler Way in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood.
(Seattle Police Department)

Pro-police candidates in Seattle also held the lead in races for city attorney and City Council.

In Cleveland, voters passed a charter amendment to establish the Community Police Commission, a civilian oversight board that would be the final authority on issues of discipline toward police officers. It passed by a margin of 59%-41%.

Earlier this week, Democratic Cleveland Mayor-elect Justin Bibb blasted the messaging of defunding the police. “Let me say this loud and clear – the charter amendment is not about defunding the police. ‘Defund the police’ is the worst label in American political history.”

Fox News’ Louis Casiano and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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