I last talked about President Bush's attacks on the law enforcement budgets of America in Feb of this year. Year after year the President and the formerly Republican controlled Congress cut and cut all law enforcement grants and funding until it was almost non-existent. Hillary Clinton hit on this fact when she recently spoke to a meeting of the National Association of Police Organizations. Hillary promised more funding for police programs, including an anti-drug initiative and bulletproof vest program. Santa Fe used to receive funding to purchase 8 to 10 vests a year, the cost of which is about $600 a piece. For the last few years we received zero. There used to be federal grants for putting officers in schools and hiring and training new officers. Now for most agencies there is no money for these programs.
Year after year the cuts continued until the recent take over of Congress by the Democratic Party. This year the funding finally began to be restored as funding was increased for the JAG and HIDTA law enforcement programs. The Democrats pushed to increase funding and were successful in doing so since taking back congress from the Republicans. I have never understood how the Republicans are often seen as stronger on crime issues in national polls yet the strongest president on crime funding and issues in recent years was none other than President Bill Clinton. The recent Republican Congress decimated funding for law enforcement and things only got better when Democrats returned to power. I am looking forward to the next president who is bound to be a Democrat. I truly believe the tide will shift to real homeland security and true protection of citizens from the real threats in their own neighborhoods and on their own streets. So don't forget, Hug a Democrat next time you see one, or better yet, vote for him or her.