Soros-backed group wants to see how badly they can screw up Chicago

AP Photo/Teresa Crawford

The city of Chicago hasn’t ever been the pinnacle of safety as far as our big cities go, but over the last handful of years, it’s gotten really out of hand. It’s so bad that it’s often held up as the example of what an unsafe city looks like.


It’s not the most violent city, to be fair, but it’s not exactly a great place to hang out, either.

And it seems a group backed by leftist billionaire George Soros wants the new mayor to make a move that isn’t likely to change that for the better.

As Chicago faces sky high crime rates and an exodus of major corporations, a left-wing group funded by Democratic megadonors George Soros and Pierre Omidyar is calling on the Windy City’s far-left mayor to slash the police force and raise taxes on businesses.

The Action Center on Race and the Economy, in a report entitled “First We Get the Money,” urged Mayor Brandon Johnson (D.) to cut the police budget by 9 percent and eliminate 1,000 vacant police positions in order to defund what the center calls a “racist policing system.” The group also called on the city to reimpose a “head tax” of $33 per employee on companies that have more than 50 workers. The measures are part of a proposal that the Action Center said will raise $12 billion to fund a “just Chicago” and “true community safety.”

It’s the latest example of a group backed by the Democratic Party’s biggest donors pushing to defund police departments. Soros, who funds the pro-defund group Color of Change, contributed $495,000 to the Action Center from 2019 to 2021, according to a database of his nonprofit’s donations. Omidyar, the founder of eBay, gave $750,000 to the organization in 2020 and 2021, according to tax filings. The Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank with extensive ties to the Biden administration, in 2020 gave $75,000 to the Action Center. Other Action Center donors include the Ford Foundation and the New Venture Fund.


Well…that’s about the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard of during a spike in violent crime.

It’s not the only time I’ve heard this particular flavor of stupid, mind you, but it’s still dumb.

Luckily, while Chicago’s new mayor is pretty progressive–he hit Lori Lightfoot during the campaign from the left, after all–he can’t be that stupid, now can he?

Can he?

Well, yeah, he probably can be.

The Action Center is likely to have some influence on Johnson, who took office on Monday. Johnson in 2020 called for defunding police departments. A coauthor of the Action Center report, Saqib Bhatti, reportedly served on Johnson’s mayoral transition team. Johnson during his campaign proposed $800 million in new taxes, including a 3.5 percent tax on people earning more than $100,000 and a 66 percent increase on hotel taxes.

Now, I’m not going to say there aren’t issues with the Chicago Police Department. My time in the city was 30 years ago, so I can’t say one way or another whether or not the boys in blue there have their acts together or if they are, in fact, a racist bunch of jackbooted thugs, though I tend to figure they’re not.

What I can say, though, is that if you’re having a crime problem, you don’t gut your police department to the tune of 1,000 cops.

Yes, they’re functioning right now without those openings, but how long can they continue without them? This isn’t a few cops, mind you.

Further, this move isn’t likely to help retain the officers they already have.


Look, if the department needs reform, then reform it. I doubt it does, if for no other reason than a Soros-backed group says they’re awful and if that same group told me the sky was blue, I’d seek confirmation, but they might have gotten it right for once. <Insert comment about squirrels, visual disabilities, and acorns here.>

Yet essentially killing 1,000 jobs within the department isn’t going to help with the violent crime problem.

Like it or not, policing matters. It gets bad people off the streets and creates at least some degree of deterrence. Just seeing a police car nearby tends to prevent a lot of crime from happening, at least while it’s in sight, which might give some people a chance to get away.

Couple this with the fact that Soros-backed groups also do their damnedest to disarm Chicago residents so they can’t fight back, and you can clearly see where this is going.

My hope is that Johnson shows a lot more sense than that, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

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