In a live interview with CBS News on Wednesday, Democrat Rep. Cori Bush justified her outrageously expensive private security and in the next breath said, “We need to defund the police.”
“I’m going to make sure I have security because I know I have had attempts on my life, and I have too much work to do. There are too many people that need help right now for me to allow that,” said Bush.
If she ends up spending $200,00o or $10 more dollars on security, it doesn’t matter, she said, because she “get[s] to be here to do the work, so suck it up.”
“And defunding the police has to happen,” were the next words out of Bush’s mouth. “We need to defund the police and put that money into social safety nets.”
Bush came under fire last month after her campaign filings revealed she spent nearly $70,000 on private security over the past three months.
Federal Election Commission records show that between April 15 and June 28, her campaign sent $54,120.92 in payments for “security services” to New York-based firm RS&T Security Consulting.
Fox News reported that RS&T has “a mysterious online presence.” Its website is no longer active, “but a cached version of its now-defunct website shows that the group provides ‘executive protection agents’ that provide ‘first class executive protection and security for national and international figures.’”
Bush’s campaign paid an additional $15,000 to Nathaniel Davis for “security services” over the same time period. Oddly, Davis’s reported address in the filings is the same as Bush’s campaign headquarters.
The FEC records show that the $69,120 in security payments add up to more than a third of Bush’s $197,000 in campaign expenditures during the second quarter. They are also nearly double what her campaign spent on private security during the first quarter of 2021.
Her recent security payments are not the first she had made. During the first three months of the year, Bush’s committee paid $35,000 for security from RS&T, Davis, and Whole Armor Executive Protection, a Maryland-based firm.
Bush has also used taxpayer funds for her security. The Daily Caller reported in June that Bush’s congressional office had spent $880 on a day of protection with RS&T as the firm was simultaneously collecting checks from her campaign.
Bush is not the only member of “the squad” to pay for a private security detail, but hers is by far the most expensive. Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York spent just over $4,000, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota paid $2,800, and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts dished out $3,500 for protection. All of the women have concurrently been advocating to defund the police.
As Bush said Wednesday, she and her socialist pals in the squad are pushing to drastically cut local police budgets and allocate money instead to social programs. In the cities where police budgets were cut in response to massive Black Lives Matter protests, however, crime has skyrocketed and communities have become less safe.
As cities like San Francisco and Portland have devolved into chaos and utter lawlessness, the popularity of the “defund the police” movement has plummeted. In San Francisco, about 76 percent of surveyed citizens said they want more police presence in high-crime neighborhoods. A different poll similarly found that the majority of Portland residents reject the “defund the police” movement.
The results of Bush’s “defund the police” policies have only harmed the very communities she claims to be helping. But while she seeks to strip law enforcers out of vulnerable communities, she ramps up protection for herself. The message is clear: safety for me but not for thee.
Evita Duffy is an intern at The Federalist, co-founder of the Chicago Thinker, and a senior at the University of Chicago. Follow her on Twitter at @evitaduffy_1