Biden's DOJ Pick Tried to Convince Congress She's Against Defunding the Police, but Ted Cruz Has Receipts

Bill Clark/Pool via AP

Kristen Clarke, Biden’s Justice Department Civil Rights Division nominee, attempted to pull a fast one on Congress by claiming that, despite the rumors, she actually doesn’t want to defund the police. She would have gotten away with it, too, if it wasn’t for that pesky Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who had solid evidence that she’s lying.

According to Fox News, the Democrat Senate Judiciary Chair, Dick Durbin, tried to head off the inevitable question about defunding the police by questioning her about a Newsweek piece she had written back in June of 2020 titled “I Prosecuted Police Killings. Defund the Police—But Be Strategic.”

“The article that you referenced, Senator, I wrote to make clear that I do not support defunding the police,” Clarke told Durbin. “I do support finding strategies to ensure that law enforcement can carry out their jobs more safely and effectively. And channeling resources to emotional health treatment and other severely under-resourced areas I think is one path forward.”

Little did she know that Cruz was just waiting for his turn to actually call her out, beginning with the article’s title.

“Do you still believe it is a good idea to defund the police?” Cruz asked.

Clarke reiterated that she did not.

“I do not support defunding the police,” Clarke said. “The impetus to writing that op-ed was to make clear that I do not support defunding the police and I spend considerable time talking about the need to channel resources to places such as mental health treatment to alleviate some of the burdens that we place on the doorstep of law enforcement and the issues we ask them to wrestle with that are outside their core competency.”

But Cruz wasn’t buying it and interrupted her, reminding her of the title of her article. He didn’t stop there, either. He then ventured into the article itself and reminded her that she wrote that the Black Lives Matter protests “opened up space for transformative policy discussions,” and that “into that space has surged a unifying call from the Black Lives Matter movement: ‘Defund the police.'”

Clarke, once again, tried to reject the idea that she wants to defund the police and was simply wanting to provide a different perspective.

“Ms. Clarke, you know you’re testifying under oath here,” Cruz interrupted again, causing Durbin to become angry and demanding Cruz let her finish her response.

Regardless, Cruz pressed her on the fact that she began three paragraphs in her article with the phrase “we must invest less in police,” which were followed by arguments for more investment in social workers and mental health assistance.

“And you just told this committee under oath you don’t support investing less in police. How do you square those?” Cruz asked.

Clarke again backed away from her own words, stating that she supports Biden’s commitment to giving police $300 million. She also claimed she wasn’t the one who came up with the headline of the article, prompting Cruz to head her off at the pass and remind her about what she wrote within it.

Clarke eventually attempted a different route and pointed out that “Defunding the Police” means different things to different people.

“I advocate for defunding policing operations that have made African Americans more vulnerable to police violence and contributed to mass incarceration, while investing more in programs and policies that address critical community needs,” she wrote in her op-ed.

None of that helped her case and it’s clear that defunding the police is something that Clarke is good with, and maybe even enthusiastic about. One of the key arguments for defunding the police is rerouting it to things like social workers, however, one thing that the left has yet to answer for is how a social worker is going to stop a crime, arrest a rapist, or show up at an ongoing hostage situation.

Regardless, this is defunding the police no matter how you swing it.

So we know that Clarke is for defunding police. Now we need to ask the question as to why Dick Durbin felt the need to distract from it.