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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Bloomberg and Republicans Warn Against Changing NYPD Policing Policies

In a speech  at One Police Plaza,, Mayor Michael Bloomberg took aim at all the democratic candidates and public officials who have criticized the NYPD's  stop-and-frisk policy, accusing those who support legislation for an Independent Inspector General of playing politics, and pandering to votes while  turning a blind eye to violence and murders in minority communities.

"Make no mistake, this is a dangerous piece of legislation and anyone who supports it is courting disaster," Bloomberg said. "If you end street stops looking for guns, there will be more guns on the streets, and more people will be killed. It’s that simple."

“I will never play politics with people’s lives. My primary responsibility for mayor–as it will be for my successor–is to keep New York Safe,” Mr. Bloomberg said, according to Politicker. “Yes, creating jobs is important. Yes, providing social services to those in need is very important. Yes, providing top-quality education to our children is maybe most important of all. But protecting people from street crime and protecting  our city [from] another terrorist attack, is the most important job of any mayor, period.”

Last night at a Fundraiser for Republican mayoral hopeful Joe Lhota, in Staten Island, former Mayor Rudy Giuliani slammed critics who want to do away the police department’s controversial with stop-and-frisk policy, and pointed to Chicago as an example of what might happen if policing policies change.

“What we do that Chicago doesn’t do… [is] we aggressively enforce our laws to take guns out of the hands of criminals,” he said. “They, instead, are very, very careful. They’re very frightened. They’re very worried, very worried about rights: this right, that right, some other right. The only right they’re not thinking about is the right to be safe in your city,” he said.

Mr Lhota for his part, told RNN Monday that "more African-American men are alive today because Giuliani reduced murder by over 60%."

In response to Mayor Bloomberg's remarks today, Democratic Mayoral candidate and former City Councilman Sal Albanese issued the following statement: 

"While the hardworking men and women of the NYPD spent the last 20 years making New York City safer than it's ever been, the politicians that represent them have been living on another planet. 

"Over and over again, we have seen our elected officials use the NYPD as a punching bag. That sort of irresponsibility needs to end right here, right now. The most dangerous thing a Mayor can do is leave the public wondering where he or she stands on public safety. Unfortunately, that's exactly what my opponents are doing. They have flip-flopped and engaged in political theater in regard to the Inspector General, an undemocratic and expensive position that would do nothing to protect civil liberties and do everything to stand in the way of smart policing."

"I spent 15 years on the City Council public safety committee, led the charge to put more police on patrol during the height of the city's crime wave, and rode along with officers every year to see the boroughs from their perspective. I never wavered then, and I won't as Mayor. 

"I plan to make the city even safer, put more police on patrol, and rebuild trust between police and our communities from the ground up, not the top down. As Mayor, I won't play games. I will stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the officers who put their lives on the line for the city they love."

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