With “Law and Order” a prominent theme in his election campaign, President Donald J. Trump signed an executive memo from the White House Wednesday, September 2, 2020 taking strong action to protect American communities from rioting, violence and destruction.
Aimed squarely at city leaders who are refusing to protect their communities, the memo specifically singled out New York City, Washington, D.C., Seattle and Portland, Oregon as places where “anarchy has beset” communities.
“My administration will not allow federal tax dollars to fund cities that allow themselves to deteriorate into lawless zones,” he said.
“Without law and order, democracy cannot function. Americans cannot exercise their rights, including their rights to peaceful expression, assembly, and protest,” Trump said. “Property is destroyed, and innocent citizens are injured or killed.”
The Department of Justice and other Federal agencies will consider a number of factors, including whether the city defunded the police or prevented local law enforcement from intervening to restore order.
The Trump Administration will hold lawless jurisdictions accountable by reviewing Federal funds provided to them, restricting their eligibility for certain Federal grants where permissible, and working to redirect those funds to jurisdictions that protect communities.
“So far, violence across the country has cost taxpayers millions of dollars in damages to Federal office buildings, and dozens of Federal officers have been injured,” a White House release stated.
Portland recently cut the police divisions for shootings and transit violence, despite receiving hundreds of millions in grants to fund public resources such as transit and law enforcement.
As shootings skyrocket in New York City, local officials have agreed on a budget that shifts nearly $1 billion of police funding to other agencies.
“By identifying funds that may be redirected from jurisdictions where local politicians have permitted anarchy and violence to abound, President Trump is ensuring Americans are no longer forced to foot the bill for local politicians’ dereliction of duty.”