The current surge of “violence directly is correlated with the defunding of the police movement,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said on Wednesday.
“Guess what? When you defund police officers in New York and Los Angeles, you will see more violence when there are no police officers on our streets answering the phone,” McEnany told “America’s Newsroom.”
Carmen Best, the first Black police chief in Seattle’s history, left her post last week, saying on her way out that the city council’s police budget cuts had put her in a “position destined to fail,” according to a report.
Best, 55, announced her resignation Aug. 10, after the council made good on its promise to approve sweeping proposals that would slash the police department budget by $4 million and cut as many as 100 officers from the force.
“I believe 100% that they were putting me in a position destined to fail. Cutting a police department that already had low staffing numbers, that was already struggling to keep up with the demand,” Best told NPR on Wednesday. “How are we going to provide for adequate public safety in that environment?”
McEnany called out local leaders for not quelling the violence that has erupted across the country this summer.
“We know that it is the responsibility of governors and mayors to control their streets,” she said, “but look at what happened when mayors and governors came to the president for assistance. In Minneapolis, within 24 hours, there was peace on the streets, in Kenosha, within 24 hours of National Guard coming in, there was peace.
“This president offers action to secure our communities and keep our families safe versus the Democrats who have been silent for far too long,” she said.
McEnany said that under Democratic Party leadership, the “whole entire country” would be in the same predicament as Portland, Ore., a city that has been stricken with violence during an ongoing three-month protest there.
“Not an acceptable premise,” McEnany said.
Fox News’ David Aaro contributed to this report