February 26, 2024
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  • The Nation’s Capital is Suffering the Worst Crime Wave in 21st Century

          Crime in Washington, D.C. is continuing to rise at alarming rates. In the nation's capital, small businesses, residents, and even sports teams are fleeing to safer areas due to rising violence. Crime surged by nearly 40% last year, with over 270 murders, 950 carjackings, and 106 children shot—reminiscent of the 1990s crack epidemic.

    Screenshot 2024-02-26 at 12

    Via Getty Images

    Recently, both the Washington Capitals and the Washington Wizards made the decision to relocate their multibillion-dollar franchises away from D.C. An executive from Monumental Sports & Entertainment expressed concerns about D.C.'s declining public safety at a community meeting as a the reason for the moves. 

    The departure of these teams accompanies the closure of numerous restaurants in recent years. Rising rents, prices, and crime rates are contributing to a concerning downward trend fueled by democrats overspending and soft-on-crime policies. 

    Uncontrolled crime in the capital city is costing residents not only their sense of safety, but their sense of community and their tax dollars, too. 

    By the end of Fiscal Year (FY) 2022, D.C. had a $834 million budget surplus. Rather than using those funds to fight the crime that is causing residents and businesses to flee, the Council used the excess to backfill their emergency account and fund small infrastructure projects. Furthermore, D.C. has been awarded over $5.6 billion in federal taxpayer dollars through the American Rescue Plan Act and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and has yet to make any real investments to restore law and order to the city.

    Word on the Street:

    Via Politico Magazine:  

    • One D.C. resident states, “[l]iterally on my block, there’s been at least five or six carjackings in the last four or five months.”

    • “The District’s 274 murders last year represented the highest number since 1998 and more than triple the 88 homicides recorded in 2012. (Nearly 500 were slain in 1991, at the blood-soaked peak of the crack era.) Carjackings have also exploded, with a whopping 958 in 2023, up from 148 five years earlier. And while other big cities’ Covid-era crime spikes have receded, D.C.’s numbers rose again last year.”

    • “A few years ago, people jawboned about who could afford the capital’s skyrocketing rent, or marveled about how much the burgeoning local restaurant scene expected people to pay for a bowl of ramen. Nowadays, there’s a lot more chatter about safety — and about who’s to blame for bloodshed and the ambient anxiety.”

    • “When the local NBA and NHL franchises announced plans to move to Virginia, a potentially devastating blow to a downtown struggling with post-Covid office vacancies, public fear of crime and chaos in the teams’ current Chinatown neighborhood was cited as a reason.”

    Via Vox News

    • “[In 2023] DC saw its deadliest year in more than two decades, with 274 people killed and a homicide rate that makes it among the deadliest cities in the country. Violent crime also spiked nearly 40 percent in the nation’s capital, driven largely by a surge of armed robberies and carjackings, many of them perpetrated by kids.” 
    • “DC faced its largest police shortage in roughly 50 years in 2023, after being unable to meet its recruitment targets or keep pace with attrition.”

    • “Data from the US Attorney’s Office, analyzed by Washington City Paper in 2023, showed that out of 15,315 arrests made by Metro Police officers in fiscal year 2022, the US Attorney’s Office declined to prosecute 10,261 cases, or more than 67 percent of arrests, and that prosecution rates have been on the decline for years.”

    The House Committee on the Budget previously analyzed the Fiscal Year 2024 D.C. budget and found that the Metropolitan Police Department had a $20.2 million funding cut that included: 

    • Patrol Services Bureau North and South CUT by $27.6 million 
    • Recruiting Division CUT by $1.9 million 
    • Youth and Family Engagement CUT by $1.4 million 
    • School and Safety Division CUT by $2.2 million 
    • Agency Management CUT by $5.8 million

    Since FY 2017, the Metropolitan Police Department has experienced consistent defunding. The FY 2023 Police budget was $88 million short of the FY 2017 budget. With the nation facing nearly 20% higher inflation since President Biden took office, these budget cuts are disastrous and unconscionable in light of the high rates of crime. 

    President Biden and Congressional Democrats have become the party of high prices and high crime. The untenable situation in our nation’s capital city is a global embarrassment. 

    To add insult to injury, these budget cuts are not the result of lack of revenue rather, they are evidence of reckless democrat spending in D.C.:

    • According to the Tax Foundation, D.C. has the highest state and local property tax in the country at $3,740.
    • Federal grants and payments account for over a quarter of D.C.’s annual budget. 
    • On a per-person basis, D.C. receives the most federal funding in the U.S. at $6,983 per person
    • The District was awarded $2.3 billion in American Rescue Act funds and another $3.3 billion over five years from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. These include: 
      • Rebates for “high-efficiency electric appliances, heat pumps, and other products to make homes more energy efficient.
      • Greenhouse gas reduction and air quality projects. 

    The Bottom Line:

    While crime is on the rise, the D.C. government is using BILLIONS of federal dollars to clean up the air instead of the streets. 

    The House Budget Committee is counting up the cost of the Democrats’ soft on crime policies. 

    House Republicans are tirelessly working to reverse the curse of the Democrat agenda, from open border policies to their ambivalence toward the debt crisis. The Budget Committee is fighting for brighter days ahead for all Americans. See HERE for our FY24-33 Budget Resolution

    Click HERE to see House Budget Committee’s “Cost of Democrats’ Soft on Crime Policies”

    Click HERE to see “The Cost of Crime Strikes Again.”

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