By Julia Musto | Fox News – While there is definitely “common ground” in the debate over police reform, the left is “playing politics” instead of problem-solving, Deputy Assistant to the President Ja’Ron Smith asserted Tuesday.
Smith referenced South Carolina Republican Sen. Tim Scott’s police reform bill which failed a procedural “test” vote in June.
“Senator Scott really pushed to have that done in the Senate so we can have this conversation. But, too many people on the left are playing politics with it instead of getting the work done,” he said. “But, we’re willing and waiting to do just that.”
According to Smith, both Democrats and Republicans agree that creating a “co-responder program” would potentially be beneficial. The program would invest in social workers who would join police officers on the job to help deal with mental health, drug addiction, homelessness, and a host of other issues.
“There’s also common ground on certification — making certain each police department has the highest police standards, especially when it comes to issues like use of force,” he said. “And, there’s even common ground on looking at, ‘How do we deal with issues [like] racial profiling?'”
However, minds do not meet over growing calls to defund departments. While some Democratic leaders have already slashed budgets to appease protesters calling for redistribution, Smith said it’s the “wrong direction” to go in because police need resources for training and recruitment: arguably key components of reform.
While President Trump is “moving the needle” on crime, he says the problems have stemmed from “pockets of urban areas in major cities that have had this problem because they’ve been working against the president instead of working with him.”
“And again, these are nonpartisan issues,” Smith concluded. “We have to do what’s right by the people.”
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