Opinions and Legal Insights

GOP Speakers Say Biden Can’t Handle Urban Violence

Republicans used the third night of their convention on Wednesday to hammer away at an argument that Democrats are to blame for protests and violence in U.S. cities and that Joe Biden isn’t equipped to address it, reports USA Today. The attacks were a shift from the previous night, when speakers sought to frame President Donald Trump in a softer light. They were designed to fit into a broader appeal to suburban women that was evident throughout the evening. “The hard truth is, you won’t be safe in Joe Biden’s America,” said Vice President Mike Pence. It was an issue Republicans returned to again and again, misstating the former vice president’s positions on policing.

“In recent months we’ve seen weak spineless politicians [yield] control of our great American cities to violent mobs … defund the police is the rallying cry for the new radical Democratic Party,” said Lara Trump, the president’s daughter-in-law. “Joe Biden will not do what it takes to maintain order to keep our children safe in our neighborhoods.” Polls show growing support for the Black Lives Matter protests and concerns about police brutality, but GOP strategists believe violence and rioting could drive many voters in the opposite direction. “Democrats have got to be concerned about what is going on in so many of our cities,” said Republican Doug Heye. Republicans offered little explanation about why Biden was ill-prepared to address racial strife at the root of the protests, or what Trump would do about it. Claremont-McKenna College Prof. Jack Pitney said, “they are trying to revisit 1968 and 1988, when Republicans thought that crime was their winning issue.” Pence accused Biden of not saying “one word about the violence and chaos engulfing cities across this country” at last week’s Democratic convention.