President Trump has begun the process to defund lawless cities around the country like New York and Portland of taxpayer money they get in the form of federal funds:
My Administration will do everything in its power to prevent weak mayors and lawless cities from taking Federal dollars while they let anarchists harm people, burn buildings, and ruin lives and businesses. We’re putting them on notice today. @RussVought45
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 3, 2020
Here’s more on the details of Trump’s order:
NY POST – President Trump is ordering the federal government to begin the process of defunding New York City and three other cities where officials allowed “lawless” protests and cut police budgets amid rising violent crime, The Post can exclusively reveal.
Trump on Wednesday signed a five-page memo ordering all federal agencies to send reports to the White House Office of Management and Budget that detail funds that can be redirected.
New York City, Washington, DC, Seattle and Portland are initial targets as Trump makes “law and order” a centerpiece of his reelection campaign after months of unrest and violence following the May killing of George Floyd by Minnesota police.
“My Administration will not allow Federal tax dollars to fund cities that allow themselves to deteriorate into lawless zones,” Trump says in the memo, which twice mentions New York Mayor Bill de Blasio by name.
“To ensure that Federal funds are neither unduly wasted nor spent in a manner that directly violates our Government’s promise to protect life, liberty, and property, it is imperative that the Federal Government review the use of Federal funds by jurisdictions that permit anarchy, violence, and destruction in America’s cities.”
Federal agencies must detail “all Federal funds provided to Seattle, Portland, New York City, Washington, D.C.” Also, within 14 days Attorney General Bill Barr must develop a list of “anarchist jurisdictions” that “permitted violence and the destruction of property to persist and have refused to undertake reasonable measures” to restore order. The memo does not require Barr to include the four cities, possibly for legal reasons.
The review will take about 30 days, at which point the White House Budget Director, Russ Vought, will report back to the president with recommendations. According to the New York Post this could cost these cities a ton of money, as they note that New York City receives $7 billion a year.
You can accuse Trump of using this to increase his appeal to voters for the upcoming election, which is probably true. But he’s not wrong. Some of these cities, like New York, are defunding police departments of significant money which only puts people in more danger and increases crime and lawlessness. I for one and glad Trump is standing up for the rule of law and looking for ways to push states back in the direction of law and order.