House Democrats are furious with President Joe Biden after he came out in favor of overruling the District of Columbia’s crime bill.
On Thursday, Biden announced that he will sign a resolution to nix the crime bill.
The crime bill has come under heavy criticism from Republicans and centrist Democrats.
But last month, 173 House Democrats voted along with what they thought was the White House’s stance that Biden would veto the resolution in an attempt to stand up for the District’s “home rule.”
Instead, Biden made the revelation to Senate Democrats during lunch on Thursday and, in the process, angered their colleagues across the Capitol complex.
“I support D.C. Statehood and home-rule – but I don’t support some of the changes D.C. Council put forward over the mayor’s objections – such as lowering penalties for carjackings.
“If the Senate votes to overturn what D.C. Council did – I’ll sign it.”
One irate House Democrat unloaded on Biden via text messages to the D.C. media outlet The Hill: “The White House f*cked this up royally.
“So a lot of us who are allies voted no in order to support what the White House wanted.
“And now we are being hung out to dry,” the lawmaker continued.
“F*cking AMATEUR HOUR.
“HEADS SHOULD ROLL OVER AT THE WHITE HOUSE OVER THIS.”
Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-CA), the No. 3 House Democrat, went on record with his rebuke:
“It’s disappointing for me and anybody who believes in home rule, honestly.
“I’m a former mayor of a city of 70,000 and I wouldn’t want the federal government coming in and telling me what city ordinances to pass.
“So I think it’s disappointing in that context.
“I voted against it, but I understand and respect the president’s position here.
“We’ll see, the Senate has to pass that, and I know that they’ve said they have the votes but all of those things have to happen.
“But it’s disappointing for those of us who believe in home rule.”
Democrat D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton warned that the move fails to tackle soaring crime rates.
“Today has been a sad day for D.C. home rule and D.C. residents’ right to self-governance,” Norton said.
“We had hoped that with more Senate support, we would have been able to ensure that neither disapproval resolution pending before the Senate would reach the president’s desk, but with the nationwide increase in crime, most senators do not want to be seen as supporting criminal justice reform.”
I support D.C. Statehood and home-rule – but I don’t support some of the changes D.C. Council put forward over the Mayor’s objections – such as lowering penalties for carjackings.
If the Senate votes to overturn what D.C. Council did – I’ll sign it.
— President Biden (@POTUS) March 2, 2023
REPORTER: “I’m still struggling, how [Biden] can support statehood for DC…but then in this instance he’s deciding not to allow them that opportunity…”
KJP: “Because this is just different.” pic.twitter.com/tIvyvR6q46
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) March 2, 2023
New from @charlesallen on Biden’s betrayal of D.C. home rule:
“D.C. is perfectly capable of governing itself. We are not subjects, and we unequivocally reject anything less than full control of our own affairs. We reject the oppression and paternalism of federal interference.” pic.twitter.com/8UvN4YjQvD
— Mark Joseph Stern (@mjs_DC) March 2, 2023
In January, the crime bill passed the Democrat-controlled D.C. City Council unanimously.
After Washington D.C.’s Democrat Mayor Muriel Bowser vetoed it, the city council overrode it 12-1.
Among other things, the bill would eliminate most mandatory sentences and lower penalties for a number of violent offenses.
Among the crimes that would get a soft penalty include carjackings and robberies.
In a tweet, Biden specifically mentioned the issue of carjackings.
As of Thursday, there have been 94 carjackings in D.C. in 2023 alone.
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