Democrats seem to be quite worried about crime, but not for the reason one might expect. Several high-profile leftists have expressed concern about rising crime rates across the country, and their primary concern appears to be the political impact of this trend. These individuals have raised questions as to how this increase in illegal activity might affect the Democratic Party’s chances of winning elections in 2022 and 2024.
Crime Rates and Democrats’ Prospects for Victory
Several Democratic media activists and influencers have begun using their platforms to warn their party that their seemingly relaxed approach toward crime might cost them political victories in the not-too-distant future. Vox founder and New York Times columnist Ezra Klein posted a tweet noting that the soft-on-crime perception that many have of the Democratic Party might be an issue going forward.
“Violent crime is spiking,” he wrote. “Homicides in cities were up by 25-40 percent in 2020, the largest single-year increase since 1960. And 2021 isn’t looking any better. This is a crisis on its own terms.” He continued:
“The politics of this could really tip, and not just in cities — if these numbers keep getting worse, then as with Nixon and Reagan in the 70s and 80s, it could bring ‘law and order’ conservatives (including Trump) back to power in 2024.”
Other leftists concurred with Klein’s assessment. Slate’s Will Saletan responded: “If crime surges, public opinion will move back to the right, fast. If progressives don’t rein in crime, conservatives will.”
Breitbart News reported:
“Nationally, the murder rate is up by more than 25 percent, largely because of urban shootings amid the Black Lives Matter movement and the rollback of police activities. So far, the Democrats’ base shows little or no worry about the political consequences of their anti-police rhetoric and funding cuts.
“Few GOP legislators are talking up the issue, in part, because of fear they will alienate swing voters. But a GOP campaign for law and order would be much preferred by business groups than a populist campaign for lower migration and higher wages.”
Some Democratic politicians are being affected by the crime issue and have even lost their positions due to their inability to deal with the problem. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms recently announced that she would not be running for re-election. The rising crime rate was cited as one of the reasons for her decision, according to The New York Times.
Democratic politicians in areas like New York City and San Francisco passed measures protecting shoplifters and others who steal from businesses. Walgreens has been forced to close 17 stores in San Francisco because an anti-sentencing measure allows bad actors simply to take items from retail establishments without fear of prosecution. The city’s district attorney, Chesa Boudin, is currently facing a recall effort.
Should Democrats Be Worried?
Given that crime rates are on the rise and the disturbing reality that they may not decrease anytime soon, left-leaning politicians and candidates should be concerned about their chances of winning in 2022 and 2024. It seems that they believed the outrage over the murder of George Floyd and other instances of police brutality would enable them to take an even softer approach to crime. In many cases, Democrat-controlled local governments chose to do nothing as rioters destroyed buildings, property, and even lives during the summer of 2020.
However, they may have miscalculated. The American public was largely on board with condemning corrupt police officers. However, this does not mean they are willing to deal with high crime rates. Holding police officers accountable does not translate into allowing criminals to wreak havoc in their cities. It appears the Democratic Party is intent on learning this lesson the hard way.
Read more from Jeff Charles.