“Defund the police. Sound crazy? Not to Nicole Quick. She has backed a radical plan to defund our police.
The radical activists who call this peaceful are bankrolling Nicole Quick. She was quick to take their pledge, quick to take their money. And She will be quick to take their side. Stop Nicole Quick. Fast.”
Jon Hardister for NC House TV Ad
The 30 second television spot launched by Jon Hardister against his Democrat opponent Nicole Quick, in State House District 63, is about as tough as you will find in a state house race. Using the all too familiar images of riots and breakdown of law and order we have seen this year, the ad accuses Quick of wanting to defund the police, signing a promise to do so, and taking money from a group promoting such efforts.
State Rep. John Szoka (R-Fayetteville) has a similar ad that both attacks his Fayetteville area District 45 Democratic opponent Frances Jackson, while contrasting his support for “good cops” while holding “bad cops” accountable.
Quick and Jackson are two of 47 state House Democrat candidates and eight state Senate candidates who signed pledges with a group that supports an agenda to reallocate money away from policing efforts.
State House Republicans have gone on the offensive across North Carolina in key districts accusing Democrat candidates for the General Assembly of being bankrolled by a radical out of state group that wants to defund the police. Many of the Democrat lawmakers and candidates signed a pledge with the group to do just that, as recently reported by Civitas.
Republicans have launched a substantial direct mail offensive.
In a piece that began hitting mailboxes around September 18, just four days after House Speaker Tim Moore held a press conference highlighting the issue, a hard hitting mail piece was sent to voters in western Wake County, highlighting Rep. Sydney Batch’s (D-Raleigh) signed pledge with Future Now Fund, to defund the police, restrict the ability of law enforcement to obtain basic protective equipment and strip citizens of Second Amendment rights with no due process. The pledge also includes ending cash bail and the assignment of court fees and costs, one which would return some dangerous criminals back to the streets, the other which would further defund the police by eliminating a revenue source for police training and police retirement.
Included in part of the pledge is the policy statement:
Batch is one of 11 Democratic House candidates that signed the pledge and then received a $5,400 contribution from the group, the maximum allowed by law. The Raleigh News and Observer reported that “the Future Now Fund gave $59,400 to 11 Democratic candidates for state House along with $50,000 given to the Democrats joint house campaign fund.”
Rep. Batch took to Twitter to respond to the charges:
However, she did not respond to direct questions of what exactly were the “lies.”
At the same time, the Republicans campaign arm has launched a mail effort against Farkas, highlighting his signed pledge.
Despite signing the pledge with Future Now Fund, and accepting the maximum $5,400 dollar contribution from the group, Farkas denied wanting to defund the police to WITN . “I do not support defunding the police,” said Farkas. “I do not support weakening law enforcement. My policy priorities actually call for additional funding for our police as well as common sense reform.”
The denials by Democrats are weakened by the fact that the organization that produced the pledge, and funded the Democratic state House efforts, edited the website that hosts the pledges after the controversy broke, apparently causing press outlets to unknowingly report the edited pledge as the original content.
A new sentence was immediately added saying “Signing the America’s Goals pledge is not an endorsement of any specific bill,” so that news outlets unknowingly reported that added sentence as part of the original pledge.
To find the details on police funding, however, one must go to the original source (see more below).
The change to the pledge was not mentioned by House Democrats or the group proposing it, despite their persistent denials it was “a lie” that the pledge would defund law enforcement.
House Speaker Tim Moore released a statement asking, “If House Democrats have supposedly not pledged to defund the police, why was it necessary to immediately change the website when news broke?”
Yet the active Future Now pledge still explicitly recommends defunding law enforcement separate from its model bills – which are supposedly not part of the pledge anymore despite still being indexed directly under the pledge’s organized agenda under Section 5C.
The pledge policies are broken down into seven areas representing “America’s Goals.” The pledge affirmatively states “I support America’s Goals….I pledge to advocate for these goals.”
According to The Atlantic, America’s Goals is a comprehensive progressive wish list that “helps legislators draft and pass legislation.”
“America’s Goals has everything you need to achieve results: an agenda, a policy library, a 50 State Report Card, and the bills,” the Future Now fund “blueprint” says.
Section 5c of the “America’s Goals” policy pledge — the section with a “police budget reallocation” URL, repeatedly calls for reducing law enforcement funding and “reinvesting policing savings.”
Section 5c is specifically listed on the Future Now pledge signed by House Democrats in reference to this policy. The pledge headline just above Section 5c says, “I support America’s Goals…I pledge to advocate for these goals.”
According to the center-left Brookings Institution, “defund the police” means “reallocating or redirecting funding away from the police department to other government agencies.”
Model legislation on the site further provides pledge signers a draft bill to help defund law enforcement.
This issue is bound to gain even more attention after the City of Asheville answered the calls the “defund the police, by slashing 3% of the departments budget. Council member Brian Haynes opposed the measure because he said the cuts did not go far enough. “With the stated goal of seriously addressing Black Asheville Demands of divesting from the police and investing in Black communities, these proposed cuts fall way short,” said Haynes. In total, 47 current House Democratic members and candidates signed the pledge to defund the police, limit the ability of police to obtain protective equipment and to limit Second Amendment rights.
The full list is below:
Emily Bunch Nicholson – House District 1
Kandie Smith – House District 8
Brian Farkas – House District 9
Rep. Allison Dahle – House District 11
Tom Simmons – House District 17
Rep. Deb Butler – House District 18
Marcia Morgan – House District 19
Rep. Raymond Smith – House District 21
Rep. Shelly Willingham – House District 23
James Gailliard – House District 25
Rep. Marcia Morey – House District 30
Rep. Rosa Gill – House District 33
Rep. Grier Martin – House District 34
Rep. Terence Everitt – House District 35
Rep. Julie von Haefen – House District 36
Rep. Sydney Batch – House District 37
Democratic Leader Rep. Darren Jackson – House District 39
Rep. Gale Adcock – House District 41
Rep. Marvin Lucas – House District 42
Kimberly Hardy – House District 43
Frances Jackson – House District 45
Rep. Graig Meyer – House District 50
Lowell Simon – House District 52
Rep. Verla Insko – House District 56
Rep. Ashton Clemmons – House District 57
Nicole Quick – House District 59
Rep. Pricey Harrison: House District 61
Ricky Hurtado – House District 63
Rep. Evelyn Terry – House District 71
Rep. Dan Besse – House District 74
Wendy Sellars – House District 80
Aimy Steele – House District 82
Gail Young – House District 83
Rep. Mary Belk – House District 88
Greg Cranford – House District 89
Rep. Ray Russell – House District 93
Kim Bost – House District 96
Rep. Christy Clark – House District 98
Rep. Nasif Majeef – House District 99
Rep. Rachel Hunt – House District 103
Rep. Brandon Lofton – House District 104
Rep. Wesley Harris – House District 105
Rep. Carla Cunningham – House District 106
Rep. Kelly Alexander – House District 107
Rep. Susan Fisher – House District 114
Rep. John Ager – House District 115
Rep. Joe Sam Queen – House District 119
Eight state Senate members and candidates signed the pledge: