Soros acknowledged in a Wall Street Journal op-ed published Sunday that crime was on the rise around the country, but he said it couldn’t be attributed to the policies championed by liberal prosecutors that he has invested over $40 million throughout the past decade to help elect.
“Some politicians and pundits have tried to blame recent spikes in crime on the policies of reform-minded prosecutors,” Soros wrote. “The research I’ve seen says otherwise. The most rigorous academic study, analyzing data across 35 jurisdictions, shows no connection between the election of reform-minded prosecutors and local crime rates.”
Soros did not specify the study or research he was referring to. Soros-backed prosecutors have advocated criminal justice reforms such as ending cash bail and declining prosecution of low-level offenses.
The liberal financier said violent crime has risen more in jurisdictions without “reform-minded prosecutors” and has been rising the fastest “in some Republican states led by tough-on-crime politicians.”
“Serious scholars researching causes behind the recent increase in crime have pointed to other factors: a disturbing rise in mental illness among young people due to the isolation imposed by Covid lockdowns, a pullback in policing in the wake of public criminal-justice reform protests, and increases in gun trafficking,” Soros wrote. “Many of the same people who call for more-punitive criminal-justice policies also support looser gun laws.”
Soros added that he has no intention of slowing down his financial support of liberal prosecutors.
“In recent years, reform-minded prosecutors and other law-enforcement officials around the country have been coalescing around an agenda that promises to be more effective and just,” Soros wrote. “This agenda includes prioritizing the resources of the criminal-justice system to protect people against violent crime. It urges that we treat drug addiction as a disease, not a crime. And it seeks to end the criminalization of poverty and mental illness.”
“This agenda, aiming at both safety and justice, is based on both common sense and evidence,” he added. “It’s popular. It’s effective. The goal is not defunding the police but restoring trust between the police and the policed, a partnership that fosters the solving of crimes.”
“The funds I provide enable sensible reform-minded candidates to receive a hearing from the public,” Soros concluded. “Judging by the results, the public likes what it’s hearing.”
Contrary to Soros’s claims, many prosecutors that he helped elect have overseen massive crime waves under their watch and have lost the support of their constituents.
Los Angeles District Attorney George Gascon, who received $4.7 million from a Soros-funded political action committee, saw a 46% increase in homicides in his city during his first year in office, the Washington Examiner reported.
Gascon faces a recall over his policies of downgrading felonies and choosing not to enforce most gun and drug crimes.
Murders in Philadelphia reached unprecedented levels in 2021 under District Attorney Larry Krasner, the recipient of $1.6 million of Soros’s money in 2017.
And San Francisco voted overwhelmingly in June to recall San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin, who received financial support from a Soros-funded PAC, in a stark rejection of his policies of doing away with cash bail and declining prosecution of “quality of life” crimes such as public urination and camping on the streets.