Sen. Cruz: To Impugn the Integrity of Everyone Working in Law Enforcement Is a Disservice to This Nation
June 17, 2020
WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, this week questioned members of the law enforcement community, local officials, and civil rights advocates at a full committee hearing examining police use of force and community relations. Today, he released a new video ‘Standing for Justice & Unity,' urging Americans to remember the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.
On George Floyd's death and the conversation over ‘systemic racism,' Sen. Cruz said:
"I think some of the rhetoric that has been used in the wake of Mr. Floyds killing has been inaccurate and harmful. A great many of our colleagues use the phrase ‘systemic racism,' to suggest that the entire criminal justice system is imbued with racism. I don't believe that's accurate.
"Some of our colleagues have said, this is a quote from earlier in the hearing, ‘Nothing has changed from the days Dr. King stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.' I think that proposition is demonstrably false. A great deal has changed since then. [...] Are there bigots? Yes. Are there people who violate the law? Yes and when they do so they should be prosecuted, just like the officers who killed Mr. Floyd are prosecuted. But to impugn the integrity of everyone working in law enforcement is a disservice to this nation."
Sen. Cruz went on, citing an article written by two Harvard economists on "pattern-or-practice" investigations on crime and policing:
"Let me just read from the conclusions of this study, because if we care about saving people's lives, the conclusions of this study should give us real cause for concern. [...] ‘All of the investigations that were preceded by viral incidents of deadly force have led to a large and statistically significant increase in homicide and total crimes.' And here's their estimate in particular; ‘We estimate that these investigations caused almost 900 excess homicides and almost 34,000 excess felonies.'
"So if the members of this committee agree that black lives matter; demonizing the police, causing them to pull back from protecting people's lives will predictively cause more black lives to be taken. And so I urge that we proceed with caution, with a commitment to justice, and a commitment to truth."
On whether defunding the police would result in more crime, Sen. Cruz asked:
"Now, I believe defunding the police would result in more crime, more murders, more rapes, more assaults, more burglaries. Very briefly, do each of you agree with that that would be the consequence of defunding the police?"
In response to Sen. Cruz's question, every witness agreed that defunding the police would result in increasing crime rates.