Subbing for WISN’s Dan O’Donnell, Sheriff David Clarke asked Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump about various law and order issues. [Click here to listen.] During the course of the interview, The Donald addressed the Pentagon’s controversial 1033 program. A quick history . . .
Starting in 1997, the program has transferred hundreds of millions of dollars worth of ex-mil equipment to some 8k state and local police forces. Per year. Everything from generators to armored vehicles to snow blowers to fully-automatic rifles.
In May 2015, in the aftermath of the Ferguson riots, facing criticism of police militarization, President Obama signed Executive Order 13688, limiting and prohibiting certain types of equipment (e.g., rifles of .50-caliber and higher, tracked vehicles, “flash bangs” and other explosives, and grenade launchers). Mandating better inventory control and after-action reports.
Sheriff Clarke ain’t got time for that. Neither does Donald J. Trump. Sheriff Clarke assumes that Mr. Trump is familiar with the program and asks if he’d rescind the EO, characterizing the equipment involved as “military surplus protective gear, things like ballistic helmets, ballistic shields, equipment to keep [police] and their community safe.”
“I would do that in a heartbeat. I thought it was ridiculous and I think the whole concept is ridiculous of what they did. And I mean all of a sudden people are going to start saying now we feel much better because now they don’t have much protection because that’s basically what you’re saying in a form. But absolutely 100 percent yes.”
As I intimate above, I doubt Mr. Trump is familiar with the 1033 program or the issues surrounding it. This is not the biggest deal in terms of The People of the Gun voting for Mr. Trump — what with his clearly superior position on gun rights and the chances that Ms. Clinton could very well do the same thing.
But anyone wary of the real estate magnate’s [alleged] megalomania should note that he wants the cops to tool up Big Style.
Just sayin’ . . .