Biden’s pick for assistant AG caught contradicting herself on defunding police: ‘Astonishing and not credible’


WASHINGTON, DC — President Joe Biden’s nominee for the Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights position was caught contradicting herself by a senator during her confirmation hearing.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) was questioning nominee Kristen Clarke during her confirmation hearing on Wednesday.

During the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Cruz mentioned an op-ed written last June by Clarke. The op-ed was titled, “I Prosecuted Police Killings. Defund the Police—But Be Strategic,” and called for defunding the police.

Cruz then asked Clarke if she still believed that the police should be defunded. She replied under oath:

“Thank you, Senator for that question. I do not support defunding the police.

“The impetus for writing that op-ed was to make clear that I do not support defunding the police, and I spend considerable time talking about the need to channel resources to places such as mental health treatment, alleviate some of the burdens that we place on the doorstep of law enforcement, to the issues we ask them to wrestle with that are outside their core….”

Cruz refers to statements that Clarke made in her op-ed and says:

“You just said you don’t support cutting funds from police. I find that astonishing and, Ms. Clarke, frankly, not credible because I’m holding an article you wrote and I actually pulled out a highlighter and highlighted the beginning of each paragraph going through and about midway through, you have a paragraph that says, ‘We must invest less in police and more in social workers.’

“The next paragraph is, ‘We must invest less in police and more in social support for our schools.’

“The next paragraph begins, ‘We must invest less in police and more in mental health aid.”

“Three paragraphs in your article, you begin with the words, ‘We must invest less in police,’ and you just told this committee under oath you don’t support investing less in police.

“How do you square those?”

Clarke responded:

“If I may Senator, I support the fact that President Biden is committing $300 million new dollars for the cop-to-cops program, $300 million new dollars for resources to the police. I wrote that op-ed without having the power of the purse string behind me and talked about how we can allocate a limited pool of resources in a more effective way.”

Cruz then asked:

“So do you believe you were wrong last year when you called for defunding the police and investing less in the police?”

Clarke replied by blaming an unnamed editor:

“It’s a poor title chosen by the editor.”

Cruz did not accept that as an answer, saying:

“Not just the title — your text! ‘We must invest less in police.’ Three paragraphs you begin with those words. You wrote those words. Will you agree with those words today?”

Rather than disavow her previous call to invest less in police, Clarke shifted the focus on Biden:

“Uh, without the power of the purse string I wrote those words, but President Biden is committing more resources to police, and I think that’s a great thing Senator.”

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Clarke is no stranger to opinions and has been associated with a very controversial, racist op-ed that was published in “The Harvard Crimson” on Oct. 28, 1994.

While the byline of the op-ed notes “no writer attributed,” at the bottom of the letter it notes “Kristen Clarke ’97  Victoria Kennedy ’97” with the annotation “Clarke is president of the Black Students Association.”

The op-ed purported to provide “truth regarding the genetic differences between Blacks and whites.” The entire letter read:

“In response to those who defend The Bell Curve (‘Defending The Bell Curve,’ Opinion, Oct. 24, 1994), please use the following theories and observations to assist you in your search for truth regarding the genetic differences between Blacks and whites.

“One: Dr. Richard King reveals that at the core of the human brain is the ‘locus coeruleus’ which is a structure that is Black because it contains large amounts of (neuro) melanin which is essential for its operation.

“Two: Black infants sit, stand, crawl and walk sooner than whites.

“Three: Carol Barnes notes that human mental processes are controlled by melanin–that same chemical which gives Blacks their superior physical and mental abilities.

“Four: Some scientists have revealed that most whites are unable to produce melanin because their pineal glands are often calcification or non-functioning. Pineal calcification rates with Africans are five to 15 percent, Asians 15 to 25 percent and Europeans 60 to 80 percent.

“This is the chemical basis for the cultural differences between Blacks and whites.

“Five: Melanin endows Blacks with greater mental, physical and spiritual abilities–something which cannot be measured based on Eurocentric standards.

“We can readily admit that an abused child is less likely to achieve academically than a child that has grown up in a supportive atmosphere. Black children, whether rich or poor, grow up with an added abuse which white children never have to face.

“Imagine the message that misguided information like The Bell Curve would send to a Black child who is trying to find her place in school. It’s degrading, belittling and outrageously false.

“Attacks on Black people such as those in The Bell Curve are not unique. Black children face this abuse daily through television shows, jokes aired on the radio, textbooks with truncated history, etc.

“Liberal whites underestimate the damage which racism causes on the minds of Black children, and conservative whites know all too well how to enlarge that damage.

“No matter how rich or supportive a Black person’s home might be, by the time she is ready to take the SAT or apply to college, she has struggled far more extensively than any white person of the same social and economic background.

“In addition, it is completely naive to say that Blacks have achieved economic equality with whites. It seems that whites have grown tired of hearing about racism.

“So, some have turned to measures such as The Bell Curve to relieve themselves of blame.

“It’s just ridiculous. Black people are not asking for political correctness, but truthfulness, fairness and an end to this abuse. Kristen Clarke ’97  Victoria Kennedy ’97.”

When it was Senator John Cornyn’s (R-TX) turn, he asked Clarke about the letter she submitted to “The Harvard Crimson.” Clarke claimed she was merely “holding up a mirror” to the book she mentions in her letter, “The Bell Curve.”

When Cornyn asked,  “But this was satire?”

Clarke replied, “Absolutely, Senator.”

David Harsanyi of National Review noted there was no evidence that her letter was satire:

“Indeed, there is not a single shred of contemporaneous evidence that the letter was satire. Quite the opposite. Subsequent pieces in the Crimson specifically point out that Clarke refused to concede that she wasn’t serious.

The Harvard Crimson staff, in fact, demanded a retraction and noted that it had ‘searched in vain for a hint of irony in Clarke’s letter.’ In another response, a columnist argued that ‘Clarke refuses to explicitly deny the theories’ and accused her of ‘disseminating racist theories.’”

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