(Headline USA) Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., tried to distance himself from his past support for the defund the police movement this week by calling for more federal funding for the New York Police Department.
Nadler, who is fending off a primary challenge from House Oversight Committee chair Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., and leftist Suraj Patel, was asked during a debate this week about a 2020 interview in which he expressed support for defunding law enforcement.
“Yes, it certainly should be cut,” Nadler said at the time, arguing cities and states should send more money on things like social services and education.
“We’re spending too much on the police,” he continued. “There should be substantial cuts to the police budget and a reallocation of those funds to where we need them.”
Now, however, Nadler is insisting that he didn’t mean what he said.
“I did not say I favored defunding,” Nadler said during this week’s.
“I said that I thought some resources should be shifted from the police to mental health and social services, as they were … because the cops can’t do everything, you need social services and mental health services in order to decrease crime too.”
Nadler and Maloney were forced to run against each other after New York Democrats gerrymandered them into the same district. Both Democrats have served for at least two decades in the House, and both head up important committees.
Nadler tried to make this point during the debate, all but telling voters flat-out not to vote for Patel.
“Losing one committee chairman would be unfortunate for New York,” he said. “Losing two committee chairmen would be catastrophic.”
The primary is on the books for Aug. 23 after being postponed by the bungling of redistricting commissions in the state.