Clyburn Says 'Defund the Police' Slogan Is 'Cutting the Throats of the Party'


House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.) is blasting what he calls the “sloganeering” that is taking place among progressive members of the Democratic Party.

During an interview with The New York Times about his decision to endorse Shontel Brown in the race for the party’s nomination to fill the House seat left vacant by Rep. Marcia Fudge’s confirmation to be the head of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

As the Times reports, Brown is running for the nomination against “one of Mr. Sanders’s most outspoken acolytes, Nina Turner.”

The South Carolina Congressman says his decision to endorse Brown was not about Sanders.

“What I try to do is demonstrate by precept and example how we are to proceed as a party,” Clyburn told the Times.

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He continued, “When I spoke out against sloganeering, like ‘Burn, baby, burn’ in the 1960s and ‘defund the police,’ which I think is cutting the throats of the party, I know exactly where my constituents are. They are against that, and I’m against that.”

The slogan “defund the police” became a popular rallying cry after the death of George Floyd last year.

However, some Democrats have argued that the phrase can hurt the party in elections.

House Democrats were expecting to win seats in the 2020 election, but they wound up losing seats and holding one of the slimmest majorities in the lower chamber in decades.

Do you support the "defund the police" movement?

In November, Clyburn in part blamed South Carolina Democratic Senate candidate Jaime Harrison’s loss on the phrase.

“Jaime Harrison started to plateau when ‘defund the police’ showed up with a caption on TV, ran across his head,” he said during an interview on NBC News, adding, “That stuff hurt Jaime. And that’s why I spoke out against it a long time ago. I’ve always said that these headlines can kill a political effort.”

President Joe Biden also claimed that Republicans “beat the living hell” out of Democrats by using the phrase to attack them during the campaign.

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