President Biden takes aim at GOP’s pro-law enforcement message after some Republicans call for defunding FBI following agency’s search for alumni President Trumpof Mar-a-Lago this month.
“I’m opposed to defunding the police, but I’m also opposed to defunding the FBI,” Biden said during his speech in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., on Tuesday.
While White House staff have previously pushed back on calls for funding the agency, the speech marked the first time Biden directly addressed the rising rhetoric against the law enforcement agency.
Some fear that the rhetoric against the FBI will lead to an increase in political violence, as The Hill has previously reported.
“You hear some of my friends on the other team talking about political violence and the necessity of it,” Biden said Tuesday. “No one should be encouraged to use political violence.”
He also amplified his attacks on Republican lawmakers who continue to defend the Capitol Riot on January 6, 2021.
“The cops attacked and assaulted, speared with flagpoles, doused mace, stomped on, brutalized. Police lost their lives as a result of that day,” Biden said. “You can’t be pro-law enforcement and pro-insurgency.”
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In today’s issue: The midterm angle of Biden’s speech on Tuesday.
More: House Republicans are planning goals if they regain a majority in the fall.
👮♂️ Biden touts pro-cop message
President Biden doubles public safety less than 100 days before the midterm elections, as many GOP candidates have focused their campaigns on supporting law enforcement and blaming Democrats for rising crime in big cities .
- The strategy stands in direct contrast to that employed by Democrats in 2020, when many called for the police to be “defunded” following the killings of black Americans such as George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
- Some party members say the earlier message cost Democrats competitive seats, and a number of party figures have moderated their tone on the issue over the past year.
“When it comes to public safety in this country, the answer is not to defund the police, it’s to defund the police,” Biden said Tuesday. “I haven’t met a good cop who liked a bad cop.”
Biden touted his recent accomplishments to show the party’s commitment to law enforcement, including his Safer American Plan, which would invest in 100,000 more cops to advance community policing.
“We expect them to protect us, whether they’re psychologists, sociologists…we expect them to do everything,” Biden said. “I’m sick of not giving them the help they need.”
The change in messaging also comes at a time when Republicans are fine-tuning their messages on abortion rights, as it appears to be a winning question for Democrats, suggested by recent election victories in Kansas and New York, such as the our colleague Caroline Vakil reported on Tuesday.
🎯 GOP eyes Biden in setting post-midterm agenda
As Republicans attempt to retake the House in November, they are already offering plans to go after top Democrats, including President Biden.
Several rank-and-file Republicans have introduced articles of impeachment against Biden. These resolutions will never see the light of day in the current Democratic-led Congress, but Republicans promise to follow them if they win a majority.
- This could present a headache for the House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy (California), reports our colleague Mike Lillis.
- “On the one hand, impeachment of Biden could alienate moderate voters and harm the GOP at the polls,” Lillis writes. “On the other hand, ignoring conservative impeachment demands could spark a revolt by a Republican base eager to avenge the two Democrat impeachments against Trump, who remains the most popular national figure in the GOP.”
McCarthy and former President Trump remain close allies. On Tuesday, the former president responded to an image that identified McCarthy as a “RINO” (Republican in name only), posting on Truth Social that the House leader is “fighting for Republican wins in the House.”
representing Elise Stefanik (NY), the House’s No. 3 Republican, is also walking a fine line in calling Biden “unfit” to serve but not endorsing his impeachment. Neither his office nor McCarthy’s office responded to Lillis’ request for comment.
McCarthy and other high-profile Republicans have suggested they may also go after senior Biden administration officials instead of the president himself.
📝 Conservative Biden officials want to impeach
House Republicans have identified several members of the Biden administration whom they would seek to target for impeachment if they win the chamber in the fall:
Homeland Security Secretary Alexander Mayorkas
Attorney General Merrick Garland
Secretary of State Antoine Blinken
- Two GOP members – Reps. Ralph Norman (CS) and Andy Harris (Md.) – introduced a resolution to remove Blinken after the US withdrew from Afghanistan in August 2021.
And despite the Conservatives’ impeachment wishlist, the midterm reviews are still two months away and the results are far from certain.
Emily Brooks of The Hill reported Sunday that analysts who previously predicted a “red wave” are growing increasingly wary of potential GOP gains.
‘The enthusiasm just isn’t there,’ GOP strategist Rick Tyler said. “The last time Republicans had a good year, they were 6 points ahead in the generic poll. Now we are barely 2 points ahead. So it definitely won’t happen. »
Read more from Brooks on the now bleaker forecast for the GOP.
〰 ELECTORAL IMPULSE 〰
There’s a lot at stake this fall as the GOP tries to vie for control of the House and Senate and the Democrats try to keep their grip on both. The hills RatedDC crew will keep you posted on what the polls show:
ARIZONA: In the heated Arizona Senate race, the Democratic senator. Mark Kelly is ahead of its GOP challenger, venture capitalist Blake Masters, in a new poll from the Atlanta-based Trafalgar Group. A Fox News poll earlier this month found Kelly was 8 points ahead of Masters. Learn more about the race here.
NEW HAMPSHIRE: Retired Army General. Don Bolduc has a big lead in the Republican Senate primary, according to a new poll. The winner of the GOP will face Will Sen. Maggie Hassan (DN.H.) in November.
MAJORITY RULE: The GOP’s chances of taking control of the House have dipped slightly, according to a new general poll. This weekend’s CBS News poll estimates Republicans will win 226 House seats in November, up from an estimated 230 seats last month. Learn more here.
POTUS: More than half of Democratic voters in a new poll think President Biden is not expected to seek a second term in 2024. A USA Today/Ipsos poll found that 56% of Democratic voters are against a re-election bid by their party leader, despite approving his government experience, knowledge of politics and focus on leadership. unification of the country. BUT… Biden also saw his highest approval in a year in a new Gallup poll that saw his approval rating jump to 44%.
Longtime journalist in Washington Alan Fram retires from The Associated Press after nearly 40 years of congressional coverage.
In his farewell article published Tuesday, Fram expressed concern about the decline of bipartisanship on the Hill, chronicling how relations between Republicans and Democrats have evolved since its inception.
“I still hear Democrats and Republicans making dinner plans. The grief over the accidental traffic death this month of Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) And two assistants were bipartisan and sincere,” Fram wrote. “Yet today’s middle ground seems narrower, the atmosphere darker, the stakes higher.”
📚 National Book Day
Labor Day weekend means the national book day (via Library of Congress) returns to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center Saturday.
- The gathering of authors and book lovers has been around for more than two decades, offering free author talks and live activities.
- Fan favorites like the resident curmudgeon from ‘Parks and Recreation’ Nick Offerman and COVID-19 TikTok darling Leslie Jordan are part of this year’s program.
Find this year’s program here and follow even more updates on the Library of Congress blog.
Got news, juicy gossip, insights or other insider info? Send us advice: Elizabeth Crisp and Kelsey Carolan. And encourage your friends to sign up here: thehill.com/noted.
Well see you tomorrow!