DAN WALTERS: Crime could become big issue in 2022 | Opinion

California is regularly experiencing an increase in crime, or at least public awareness and concerns about crime, which becomes a political issue.

In the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, when crime rates and public fear peaked, the Republicans made great profits in elections by accusing democratic rivals of being vulnerable to crime.

Republicans George Deukmejian and Pete Wilson appointed the issue as governor, and the Republicans made significant profits in the legislature and contributed significantly to the three liberal Supreme Court judges banished by voters. .. The times were also followed by a series of lock-up decisions, such as “Three-strikes Law and You Are Out”, which packed tens of thousands of additional felony crimes into prisons.

Eventually, the problem was reversed as crime rates fell and state politics drifted to the left. Over the past decade, a series of legislative acts and voting measures have eased punishment, reduced prison population by a third, and former Governor Jerry Brown led the “Criminal Judicial Reform” movement.

Gavin Newsom, the current governor, has proposed to continue Brown’s policies for the most part, unilaterally suspend the execution of murderers and close several prisons. So it was a bit strange to see New Sam publicly accuse the offenders after a series of smash-and-grab raids in the San Francisco Bay Area and Southern California luxury retailers last week.

“The level of organized retail theft we see is simply unacceptable,” Newsom said. “Businesses and customers should be relieved while shopping on holidays.”

San Francisco district attorney Chesa Boudin has filed a felony accusation against nine people arrested for retail theft in the face of a call election alleging that they are too soft against crime.

Despite dealing with retail store thefts, the more serious problem in the state is the disturbing increase in violent crime. In the state, homicides increased by 31% to 2,258 in 2020, the highest since 2007.

Auckland police chief Leron Lee Armstrong announced the city’s 100th murder this year when Newsom was accusing retailers of theft last week, “in a call to everyone in the community that this is a crisis. Without it, I wouldn’t. ” I don’t know what it is. By this time last year, there were 66 murders in Auckland, and in 2019 there were 52 murders.

The reaction of Newsom and Boudin implies that they are in political danger to their concerns about crime. This situation also boldly critics of recent actions to mitigate criminal penalties, such as Proposal 47 in 2014 and Proposal 57 in 2016 by Jerry Brown.

One of them was former police officer Jim Cooper, who sponsored Proposal 20, and the 2020 measures to revoke some provisions of the previous initiative failed.

“People need to know that there is a direct correlation between rampant serial theft and voters being fooled by supporters of Proposal 47,” said Cooper, a Democrat in Elk Grove. Said. “We are monitoring the epidemic of theft caused by Proposal 47, which is beyond promise and underdelivered, literally turning California into a Wild Wild West.”

So is crime a problem in the 2022 elections when other politicians such as New Sam, Boudin, and Justice Secretary Rob Bonta confront voters?

Sacramento district attorney Anne-Marie Schubert opposes Bonta as a criminal prosecutor. Boudin’s recall has also been voted on, and critics of Los Angeles district attorney George Gascon are also trying to recall him.

If crime, especially violent crime, continues to move upwards, it could certainly be a problem in the 2022 hot button elections.

Send an email to Dan Walters of Cal Matters dan@calmatters.org.. CalMatters is a non-partisan, non-profit journalism venture that aims to explain how the California State Capitol works and why it matters. For other columns by Walters, calmatters.org/dan-walters..

DAN WALTERS: Crime could become big issue in 2022 | Opinion Source link DAN WALTERS: Crime could become big issue in 2022 | Opinion

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