Texas Governor Greg Abbott told a national television audience on Wednesday that he has proposed legislation prescribing the freezing of tax revenue for any city that defunds their police or law enforcement department.
“You’ve seen and you have documented what happened in Portland, in Seattle, in Chicago, New York, and cities across the country,” Abbott told Fox News’ Sean Hannity. “Now Austin, Texas, has defunded law enforcement [and] police … despite the fact that over the first six months of this year, the city ranked number one in the United States for the highest percentage increase in murders was Austin, Texas.”
“[T]hey will lose the lifeblood of the revenues they receive from property taxes in Texas,” Abbott explained. “What this does, in English, is it is going to defund cities and cities’ ability to operate at all if they try to defund law enforcement.
Austin, with a stunning 64 percent in homicides, is leading the nation in year-to-year increase of murders.
What did the Democrat controlled Austin City Council do? They slashed $150 million from the Austin Police Department’s budget.
“We believe in law enforcement in Texas and we are not going to allow a replication of the types of policies we’ve seen destroying cities like Seattle and Portland and others.”
“The unwarranted attack by the Austin mayor and city council on their police department’s budget is no more than a political haymaker driven by the pressures of cancel culture,” Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton responded in a public statement.
“Unfortunately, the targets of this ‘cancelling’ are the brave men and women who selflessly put their lives on the line to keep our families safe,” Paxton said. “The city council’s action to slash funding disregards the safety of our capital city, its citizens, and the many guests who frequent it.”
Austin’s leaders are facing criticism and citizen backlash for the ongoing crime problems spiraling upward. The city is embarrassingly surpassing other high crime Democrat led cities like Philadelphia, Detroit, Memphis, and Chicago.