VP nominee Sen. Kamala Harris asked supporters to donate to bail fund for violent rioters (Op-ed)

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MINNEAPOLIS, MN – Newly on the ballot and already backpedaling Wednesday, the democrat nominee for vice president is shying away from past entanglements but has yet to clarify her recent pushes to defund police departments across the country. 

Just two months ago, California Senator Kamala Harris urged her Twitter followers to donate money to a group that clashed with law enforcement as protests erupted over the death of Minnesota man George Floyd while in police custody.

Her tweet, echoed celebrity calls for donations. On June 1st, she tweeted: 

“If you’re able to, chip in now to the @MNFreedomFund to help post bail for those protesting on the ground in Minnesota.” 

According to its website, The Minnesota Freedom Fund actively works to support “support decarceration efforts” in Minnesota, and is on a mission to “abolish systems intended to harm.” The website reads: 

“We believe that our criminal justice system, like many other systems in our society, was designed to maintain and uphold white supremacy while prioritizing the wealth, power, and influence of the few at the expense of the many.

It is long past due to abolish these systems so that together we can create a more inclusive, just, and equitable society.” 

Days before Sen. Harris called for support for the group, MFF announced its support for defunding the police. 

Whether Sen. Harris was aware of that is still unknown. But, announced Tuesday as now former Vice President Joe Biden’s running mate, it’s not her first hard take on policing. 

In late June, Sen. Harris appeared with transgender Hollywood star Laverne Cox on Bravo’s “Watch What Happens Live.” She tells the host that putting more cops on the street is “just wrong.” 

When pushed on the “defund the police movement,” the now senator and former California attorney general said: 

“It’s about reimagining public safety and how we achieve it. Far too long, the status quo thinking has been by putting more police on the street you’re going to have more safety, and that’s just wrong.

That’s not how it works. The fact is, if you go to upper middle-class suburban neighborhoods, you will not see that police presence.

You will not see that patrol car driving up and down the street and stopping teenage boys. But, what you will see in those communities, you will see very well-funded schools.” 

Sen. Harris points instead to high rates of homeownership, access to healthcare and mental health care, education and capital for small businesses. She concludes the segments by saying: 

“Healthy communities are, by definition, safe communities.” 

Media outlets reported in May that at least 13 Biden campaign employees donated money to the MFF in the wake of George Floyd’s death. 

During a recent campaign event, the candidate himself expressing support for additional funding for the police. Last week, The Hill reporting that Biden said: 

“I don’t want to defund police. I want to get police more money in order to deal with the things they badly need, from making sure they have access to community policing, that they have also in the departments social workers, psychologists, people who in fact can handle those god-awful problems that a cop has to have four degrees to handle.” 

In the meantime, we learned this week that an editor reportedly attempted to “erase” Kamala Harris’ past by removing past finance scandal and other unfavorable facts from her Wikipedia page.

An article in the Intercept reports that a Wikipedia editor was trying to erase the page of former Democratic Presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) who is now Joe Biden’s Vice-Presidential pick. 

The pieces removed from Sen. Harris’ page were a past campaign finance scandal and her record as a hardline prosecutor. 

The identity of the eraser by admission is Bao Nguyen a Bay area lawyer. 

Before he admitted being involved, readers of the intercept article began investigating his identity after the piece was published. 

Through an IP address he was identified due to edits he made right before his account’s first edits.   His use of another account, combined with another social media site,  identified him as the editor.

He was listed on a LinkedIn page as a Volunteer Organizing Leader for the Harris Presidential Campaign. 

The Intercept article by Aida Chavez notes that in 2016, editors had been heavily involved in contributing to Tim Kaine’s article before he was announced as Hilary Clinton’s Vice-Presidential pick. 

As a result of this, a user on Reddit created a script to monitor for activity about VP picks for Biden.  The user noticed significant editing on Kamala Harris’ page.  

Chavez delved into the Nguyen’s activity on Harris’ page which identified him as “Bnguyen 1114” as the person responsible for the editing activity.  Chavez noticed that he removed content potentially unfavorable to Harris.

Nguyen removed such things as Harris’ defense of Orange County Prosecutors implicated in widespread misconduct. 

He later claimed it was removed for “proof-reading.” 

He also removed details about a campaign finance violation involving Harris’ campaign for District Attorney, erasing the criticisms based on Harris’ defense. 

He also removed a quote from Harris stating, “it is not progressive to be soft on crime”, but it was later restored after the Intercept article. 

Not mentioned were other unflattering removals by Nguyen. 

The removals included details about Harris’ early political career and the benefits of a relationship with future San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, then the speaker of the California Assembly, who she dated. 

Her salaries earned at positions to which Brown appointed her were also removed and a quote from a campaign manager who claimed Harris benefited from the relationship.

As if there were not enough edits, removals, and erasures to Harris’ history, there was one other big detail removed.  It involved how Harris handled an investigation into the death of Mitrice Richardson.

She was a black woman who, after being detained by the Malibu Sheriff’s department for not paying her bill at a diner, was later found dead after being released from jail without her car and phone. 

Harris closed the case after she opened it, citing insufficient evidence for criminal charges.  This piece that Nguyen has erased, has not been added back into the article.  

There were edits made to positive material that were reversed by administrator Michel Aaij, or “Drmies” on Wikipedia calling it “grossly excessive and excessively detailed” and poorly sourced.  

Nguyen has denied working for Harris’ Campaign, and claims to be a volunteer for Democratic Campaigns when he met Harris. 

This volunteer work is viewed as a “conflict of interest” on Wikipedia.  Editors are expected to disclose these things on articles that they edit. 

His failure to disclose his volunteer work is not unheard of, as the creator of the page of 2020 Democratic Presidential candidate Peter Buttgieg, also volunteered in one of his campaigns, and failed to disclose it. 

To add to the streak of failing to tell the truth, the editor who created Wikipedia’s page on Andrew Yang, another 2020 candidate, did not disclose that she was the marketing manager for Yang’s non-profit.  She later served on his campaign.

There is a common problem occurring on Wikipedia with conflicts of interest, even if it means going against policies, and in cases of undisclosed paid editing, the site’s Terms of Use.  

The site’s agenda-driven editors  have been accused of being biased on political articles whose editing  has become slanted and too left-wing.

On Tuesday, August 11th, Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) was announced as Joe Biden’s running mate for the 2020 Presidential Election.

As many throughout the country celebrate this significant and historic moment, many other Americans are quick to remind everyone of Harris’ controversial history in regards to criminal justice reform.

In July 2019’s debate, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) voiced her grave concerns over Harris’ prosecutorial record and completely slammed her for allegedly jailing over 1,500 people for marijuana use, and then laughed when she admitted smoking it herself.

Gabbard said:

“Senator Harris says she’s proud of her record as a prosecutor and that she’ll be a prosecutor president, but I’m deeply concerned about this record.”

In referencing Harris’ appearance on the Breakfast Club, where she laughed about smoking a joint in her youth,

Gabbard added:

“There are too many examples to cite, but she put over 1,500 people in jail for marijuana violations and laughed about it when she was asked if she every smoked marijuana.”

Harris continued to face lingering questions on her tough stances as a federal prosecutor and back in 2010, she opposed an initiative to legalize marijuana. However, in 2015, she evolved and called for the decriminalization of marijuana.

After attacking Harris about her marijuana prosecutions, Gabbard added about Harris:

“She blocked that would have freed an innocent man from death row until the courts forced her to do so and she kept people in prison beyond their sentences to use them as cheap labor for the state of California and she fought to keep the cash-bail system in place.”

She continued:

“That impacts people in the worst kind of way.”

Over the last year, since the 2019 summer debate, Harris has shifted her positions in an attempt to position herself as a strong advocate for criminal justice reform. She has done this despite her previously held position against marijuana, which led to her prosecuting over 1,500 people for marijuana-related offenses.

According to reports, back in September 2019, Harris released her own sweeping criminal justice reform plan, which promised to facilitate loans to socially and economically disadvantaged individuals in the marijuana industry, and the plan also called for the end of mass incarceration.

In addition, her plan called for ending federal mandatory minimum sentences, terminating the death penalty and solitary confinement, along with the phasing out of for-profit prisons and cash bail.

She said:

“So it is past time to end the failed war on drugs and it begins with legalizing marijuana. Marijuana arrests account for over 50 percent of all drug arrests.”

Her criminal justice reform plan was billed as a re-envisioning of public safety in America, which would also end sentencing disparities between crack and powder cocaine offenses, and legalize marijuana at the federal level.

Criticism of Harris’ prosecutorial background has followed her since she first announced her candidacy, and coming to a climax during the second Democratic debate when Gabbard laid into her about her controversial prosecutorial record. 

After the second Democratic debate, former Senator Mike Gravel (D-AK) said that Gabbard did an “excellent job” in exposing that Harris is a “hollow candidate.” 

 

According to Biden’s criminal justice reform, there are several core principles with one of them focusing on making a just system by rooting out the racial, gender, and income-based disparities currently present in the system.

Biden also has an official, “Plan for Black America,” which includes decriminalizing the use of cannabis and “automatically” expunging all prior cannabis use convictions. With Harris as his running mate, it seems he is hoping Harris will assist his campaign by bringing more minority voters into the fold.

With racial issues as well as policing and criminal justice reform being thrust as primary initiatives ahead of the election, there is a great chance her controversial prosecutorial background will emerge in the forefront as her and Biden fight in becoming the next President and Vice President of the United States.

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Here is another article from Law Enforcement Today about Harris and her track record:

Democratic presidential nominee, Senator Kamala Harris (D-California), who is fresh off the recent debate in which Congresswoman and Army Major Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) took her to the woodshed, is now accusing President Trump of terrorizing his political detractors with immigration raids by the Department of Homeland Security and said his actions have petrified innocent families.

“This administration has directed DHS to conduct these raids as part of what I believe is this administration’s campaign of terror,” she said on “Meet the Press.” “To make whole populations of people afraid to go to work. Children are afraid to go to school for fear that when they come home, their parents won’t be there.”

Here is the problem with that.

Harris, like many of those she is running against, either doesn’t understand, or simply does not care that these families are not so innocent. Every single person apprehended in this raid was picked up for one reason, they are not in the country legally.

As such, they have broken laws. This renders them unable to adopt the “innocent” tag that Harris has provided them.

The Senator also commented on what drives Trump voters and said most of them voted for the president because of promises he made, but that he’s failed to deliver on (more on this shortly).

“Here’s the thing. There are people who voted for him for a variety of reasons,” she said during the interview. “And a lot of it had to do with the promises he made, which he has not delivered on because they were false promises. And he betrayed a lot of people. He came in saying he was going to help working families. Everyone from farmers to auto workers.”

Trump defended the DHS raids to reporters outside the White House on Friday and called them a “very good deterrent” to illegal immigration.

“I want people to know that if they come into the United States illegally, they’re getting out. They’re going to be brought out. And this serves as a very good deterrent,” the President said.

According to Fox News, the operation was carried out by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) on Wednesday and resulted in the detention of 680 illegal immigrants. Agents targeted a food processing plant in Mississippi and swarmed the facility with federal search warrants in hand.

“The execution of federal search warrants today was simply about enforcing the rule of law in our state and throughout our great country,” U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst said in a statement. “I commend these federal agents, our state and local law enforcement partners, and our federal prosecutors for their professionalism and dedication to ensure that those who violate our laws are held accountable.”

Nearly half of the detainees were released back out onto the streets the following day, however, on humanitarian grounds.

Not so fast, Senator. I must take exception to your ‘promises’ statement. Here is why. Like him or not, President Trump has kept the bulk of his campaign promises.

The ones he hasn’t kept; he is attempting to uphold his word. He has run into opposition, either from across the aisle, or from members of his own party.

Let’s look at some of those campaign promises made (and kept or still pushing) by then Candidate Trump. Many of the things on this list are why people voted for him. This is not an exhaustive list, but it catches many of the primary ones (in no particular order):

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Campaign Promise 1: To replace Antonin Scalia with a like-minded justice from a list of 20.

Trump replaced Antonin Scalia with Neil Gorsuch, an incredibly qualified and Constitution-abiding Justice. But the President didn’t stop there, as he also nominated Brett Kavanaugh, seeing him sworn in after a contentious confirmation process.

Campaign Promise 2: To suspend immigration from terror-prone countries.

Trump attempted on more than one occasion to enact a Travel Ban that is 100% CONSTITUTIONAL AND covered seven “countries of concern” outlined by the Obama Administration. This has been blocked by an extremely liberal Hawaiian judge who was appointed by Obama.

Campaign Promise 3: To defund and crack down on sanctuary cities.

The President has tried to implement a crackdown on sanctuary cities, threatening to defund them. Again, this is being blocked by judges.

Campaign Promise 4: To revive the Keystone Pipeline and Dakota Access Pipeline.

The revival of the Dakota and Keystone XL Pipelines creating American jobs.

Campaign Promise 5: To pull the US out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, an Obama-era trade deal that many believed to be detrimental to the US.

Done. Trump removed the US signature from the partnership.

Campaign Promise 6: To empower women.

Trump has signed an Executive Order promoting women in STEM jobs. He has also launched a Council empowering female leaders and female entrepreneurs

Campaign Promise 7: To renegotiate or pull out of NAFTA.

The President and his administration were able to renegotiate the trade deal, making it much more advantageous for the US. It is now the USMCA.

Campaign Promise 8: To crackdown on illegal immigration and to build a wall.

Trump has implemented a huge crackdown on illegal immigration, and he has started building miles and miles of the wall. Recently, his administration had a massive win after the courts ruled that he could in fact, legally and Constitutionally redirect money from the DOD to build the wall on out Southern Border.

Campaign Promise 9: To bolster our depleted military.

Trump has successfully increased our military budget and has directed the DOD to strengthen our fighting forces. He also went to work on repealing the Obama-era inclusion of transgendered service members. 

Campaign Promise 10: To revitalize the dying coal industry in the US.

He has enacted Joint Resolution 38 putting thousands of coal miners back to work.

Campaign Promise 11: To create American jobs and bring companies back to America, or as I like to call it, “The Magic Wand” Act.

His administration has a net increase of nearly 5 million jobs since taking office on January 2017.

Campaign Promise 12: Pushing NATO allies to pay their fair share or face the reality of the US possibly leaving.

Trump has continued to put pressure on the members of NATO to pay their fair share, rather than the US contributing the bulk of the finances, resources and manpower.

Campaign Promise 13: To enact a hiring freeze on government employees to help stop corruption.

The President enacted a hiring freeze to all federal employees, cutting down on the over-bloated bureaucracy

Campaign Promise 14: To re-establish our leadership in space exploration.

Trump signed a Bill allowing NASA funding, including an exploration to Mars

Campaign Promise 15: The repeal and replacement of Obamacare.

Trump eliminated the individual mandate tax (penalty) for choosing not to carry health insurance.

Campaign Promise 16: To rid the world of ISIS.

The Islamic State has all but been erased from the map. What used to be ISIS strongholds are no longer such.

Campaign Promise 17: To not take a salary as President.

Here is where he has donated that salary thus far.  

  • First quarter, 2017: National Park Service (for battlefield maintenance)
  • Second quarter, 2017: Department of Education (for a camp for students focused on science, technology, engineering and math)
  • Third quarter, 2017: Department of Health and Human Services (for combating the opioid crisis)
  • Fourth quarter, 2017: Department of Transportation (for programs improving the nation’s infrastructure)
  • First quarter, 2018: Department of Veterans Affairs (for caregiver programs)
  • Second quarter, 2018: Small Business Administration (for a veteran’s program)
  • Third quarter, 2018: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
  • Fourth quarter, 2018: Department of Homeland Security
  • First quarter, 2019: Department of Agriculture

Campaign Promise 18: To reform the VA and make it easier for Vets to get more healthcare opportunities.

He signed a Bill expanding the ability for veterans to seek healthcare outside of the broken VA system. He also created the Accountability Office at the VA, making it incredibly easy to oust incompetent VA employees.

Campaign Promise 19: To create much needed tax reform.

Trump has laid out an extremely concise, yet effective Tax Reform Plan to lower taxes for Americans and end things like inheritance tax, and to cut corporate tax rates down to 15%

Campaign Promise 20: To fix our country’s incredibly broken education system

He has signed an Executive Order giving the power of our country’s education back to state and local authorities.    

And lest we forget, he has met with North Korea, pulled the US out of the horrible Iran nuclear deal, and removed our signature from the Paris Climate Agreement. He has emboldened states to go after Planned Parenthood and make the most sweeping changes to the abortion laws since Roe vs. Wade was decided by the Supreme Court in January of 1973.

We have seen record-breaking numbers in the stock exchange. The economy continues to grow.

This administration has made great strides in criminal justice and prison reform.

We now have unemployment levels at all-time lows.

He has overcome false accusations of racism, corruption, collusion and obstruction of justice.

He has appointed an Attorney General who is finally looking into the Hillary Clinton campaign and her role in the Steele Dossier and Fusin GPS. 

We have a President who stands proudly behind the flag of our country and is not afraid to call those out who despise our country and our flag.

So, no Senator Harris, the man has kept his promises. Despite a Democratic party that is more concerned with beating Trump than they are with acting in the best interest of the country and the very constituents who put them in office, he is moving forward, one victory at a time.

And he is proving so many Americans right for having voted him into office.

You could take a lesson from the President.

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