Sen. Tim Scott rips defund police movement: ‘Demonizing officers results in crime spike’
“You cannot make police officers the antagonist in the story. No one wants that,” Scott told Fox News host Harris Faulkner.
Scott made the comments after Attorney General Merrick Garland unveiled a plan to give federal help to cities around the nation in an effort to reduce violent crime. The announcement comes one year after the murder of George Floyd, which sparked new riots and violent protests.
“I think the Democrats, literally led by the liberal elite, have made a bad calculation and it’s costing lives,” Scott said. “We’re seeing that in Los Angeles. We’re seeing in Minneapolis, we’re seeing that in Detroit. We’re seeing in the D.C. Baltimore, violent crime is significantly higher and murders, Harris, murders are through the roof.”
The South Carolina senator added when Americans “demonize officers, take away the resources,”they can’t expect police to do their job that “desperately” needs to be done.
Earlier this week, the family of George Floyd visited Capitol Hill and met with the South Carolina senator, President Biden, along with other top lawmakers, in hopes to reach an agreement on police reform legislation. Scott is pushing to finalize the bill in the month of June.
In an interview with MSNBC, Scott’s democratic colleague Sen. Cory Booker, D-NJ, praised the South Carolina senator’s efforts in leading the bipartisan negotiations.
“I have had moments in this negotiation that have given me solace and strength as I’ve watched Tim Scott share stories about his own encounters with police,” Booker told MSNBC. “He is not caving to the politics of this. He is sincere. We may have disagreements on a lot of the parts of the bill, but I’m telling you, as a Black man, Tim Scott is sincere in wanting to see us address these problems.”
Scott reacted and said that was “awfully kind” and appreciated Booker’s remarks. The South Carolina senator added he had a few “really challenging experiences” in the past with police officers.
The South Carolina senator mentioned most officers are “good people, doing good work for very low pay” and Americans need to understand both “sides of the coin.”
“I have confidence in our law enforcement. I know that we can make it better. We can make it safer for the officers and the communities,” Scott told Faulkner. “That’s why I’m at the table, because I’ve experienced both sides…I come out a champion for officers and will champion the cause of making communities safer…”