American gun violence "shows no sign of abating," but at least "the swing of the pendulum to the far left" has, according to former NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton.
"The president came out with a very comprehensive set of proposals earlier this week," Bratton told Sunday's "The Cats Roundtable" on WABC 770 AM-N.Y. "The good news about that is that's the first hopeful sign I've seen about starting to face up to the new virus. We dealt with coronavirus. Now we're dealing with the crime virus that was exploding almost quietly behind the coronavirus.
"So, it is a comprehensive set of proposals, basically, has stopped the swing of the pendulum to the far left."
President Joe Biden announced this week, using the authority of the coronavirus pandemic relief bill in March, funding can be diverted to fund the police.
"[Biden's] debunking of defund the police and clearly stating his effort is to refund the police, is a promising sign – where he's saying to America's mayors, governors, etc., 'Take that $350 billion that is left in COVID relief to hire more cops,'" Bratton told host John Catsimatidis.
"The effort is going to be very interesting to watch, however, as what type of reaction we do get from basically the defund the police, the criminal-justice reform movements, as to whether they respond to the president's lead. I'm hoping they do."
Among the initiatives proposed by the Biden administration and hailed by Bratton are funding research into gun violence and getting a permanent Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) director.
"I'm encouraged by some aspects of the president's proposal, particularly the ATF proposals to beef that agency up," Bratton continued. "It's a critical agency.
"So a lot of good potential news, but the devil – as in all things – is in the details."
Bratton noted the influence of anti-police activism is still strong and pressure is on Democrats to stay true to their voting base.
"There is still a lot of mischief going on around the country with a lot of these reform movements that, unfortunately, they're all well-intended but often times have awful effects as you've seen clearly in New York City and the state," Bratton said, noting top New York City Democrat mayoral primary candidate Eric Adams and Republican mayoral nominee Curtis Sliwa are both running on platforms supporting the NYPD.
"The good news is that at least in New York, at the top of government, there will be some sanity return," Bratton continued. "But, of course the problem is you have 51 city council members who are still hellbent to basically screw things up. Will have to keep our fingers crossed that the next mayor can basically control them."
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