(FreedomBeacon.com)- The White House is doing everything in its power to try to shield President Joe Biden from the fact that violent crime is rising throughout the country.
The strategy is meant to distract voters in the Democrats’ chance to take on Republican challengers in the 2022 midterm elections. The messaging is apparently starting now, from all the way at the top.
One way the White House is doing this is touting recommendations is has recently made to cities and states about how they could use funds from the recent coronavirus relief package. Some of the $1.9 trillion could go toward boosting public safety.
The Biden administration has already held a meeting with a group of law enforcement officials, mayors and leaders of the philanthropic community to try to strengthen violence intervention programs at the local level.
Merrick Garland, Biden’s attorney general, traveled to Chicago to highlight a new Department of Justice program called “strike forces.” It’s meant to disrupt networks that traffic in firearms mainly in five cities. These cities have led to new surges in gun violence, Garland said.
The White House is also doing its best to knock down the notion that Biden wants to slash funding to law enforcement agencies. The president has even tried to play both sides in a delicate balance between saying he supports law enforcement while only suggesting that some reform might be necessary.
Some of the most progressive members of his party have called for police departments to be completely defunded. Those calls all started when George Floyd was murdered by a police officer while in custody in Minneapolis in the spring of 2020.
While Biden has played up to the progressive wing at times — even nominating Boston District Attorney Rachel Rollins as the U.S. attorney in Massachusetts — he still has distanced himself from those calls.
Last week, he said during a town hall meeting with CNN:
“I’ve never, never, never said defunding the police. I don’t know any community, particularly the communities that are in the most need and the poorest and the most at risk, that don’t want police. They want police, though, to look at them as equals. They want police to treat them in a way — they don’t want police abusing.”
The federal government doesn’t have a lot of power to control violent crimes. Much of that falls on local jurisdictions and states. The Biden administration has tried to pass tougher gun laws, but that hasn’t come to fruition yet because of Republican opposition.
Instead, the DOJ launched its trafficking strike forces in Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and New York City to try to crack down on gun sales.
Officials at the White House also recently held the first meeting of a community violence intervention collaborative. The goal is to bring together philanthropic organizations with elected officials and law enforcement in 16 different jurisdictions, then strengthen the programs over the next 18 months.