Former Vice President Joe Biden said he does not support efforts to defund the police amid attacks from President Donald Trump.
Trump has repeatedly falsely alleged that Biden wants to defund the police, tying him to Black Lives Matter activists calling for such a move across the country. Trump has pushed this bizarre claim at the same time as he has tried to appeal to black voters by tying Biden to a 1994 crime bill that gave police and prosecutors far more power.
“Sleepy Joe Biden and the Radical Left Democrats want to ‘DEFUND THE POLICE,’” Trump falsely claimed on Sunday. “I want great and well paid LAW ENFORCEMENT. I want LAW & ORDER!”
"No, I don't support defunding the police," Biden told CBC News. "I support conditioning federal aid to police based on whether or not they meet certain basic standards of decency and honorableness. And, in fact, are able to demonstrate they can protect the community and everybody in the community."
"Vice President Biden does not believe that police should be defunded," campaign spokesman Andrew Bates said in a statement earlier on Monday. "He hears and shares the deep grief and frustration of those calling out for change, and is driven to ensure that justice is done and that we put a stop to this terrible pain."
Pelosi pushes back:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi did not say how she feels about the calls to defund police before Democrats unveiled a police reform bill on Monday that would make it easier to prosecute bad cops, ban no-knock warrants, ban police chokeholds, create a national database of police misconduct, restrict military equipment to police departments, and require racial bias training.
Pelosi said that people should debate defunding the police at the “local level.”
"That is a local decision," she said. "That doesn't say we're going to pile more money on to further militarize the police."