ICYMI: Republicans Caught Misleading Voters About Gov. Evers’ Public Safety Record…Again

Aug 12, 2022

ICYMI: Republicans Caught Misleading Voters About Gov. Evers’ Public Safety Record…Again

MADISON, Wis. — Republicans are desperate to mislead Wisconsinites about Gov. Evers’ record of doing the right thing for Wisconsin and investing in public safety programs across the state. The latest claim, made by the Republican Governors Association, has earned a “Mostly False” rating from PolitiFact.

The truth is, Gov. Evers has prioritized public safety investments. According to PolitiFact, “Evers has explicitly said he opposes defunding police departments and allocated $100 million in federal pandemic relief to enhance law enforcement.”

The RGA is clearly making these attacks to try to distract from Tim Michels’ radical agenda for public safety. Michels has refused to support common-sense gun safety measures and even backs a bill that would allow guns on school grounds.

This isn’t the first time Republicans have missed the facts on this issue. Previous statements by Gov. Evers’ Republican opponents have also been rated “False” by Politifact.

PolitiFact: Democrat Evers didn’t give Wisconsin counties ‘the green light’ to defund police

Heading into November, look for Republicans to hammer Democratic Gov. Tony Evers on crime and police funding.

Indeed, they already have been.

As Republicans were still picking Tim Michels as their nominee to face Evers, the Republican Governors Association sent an email blast to Wisconsin reporters on July 29, 2022 that contained this quote from spokeswoman Maddie Anderson:

“Wisconsin families are desperate for a leader whose top priority is keeping their communities safe. Instead, Governor Tony Evers gave counties the green light to defund Wisconsin’s police departments. Elections have consequences, and Evers will come to find that out very soon.”

. . .

We rated False a previous claim by Republican gubernatorial candidate Rebecca Kleefisch that Evers is “a big proponent of this defund the police movement.” In fact, Evers has said slashing police budgets “goes too far” and directed $100 million in COVID relief money toward enhancing law enforcement.

. . .

Anderson’s argument that the veto gives a green light on cutting budgets runs counter to the governor’s own statements and actions.

Just days after the Floyd case, Evers specifically opposed cutting spending on law enforcement in a meeting with Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporters and editors.

In a June 4, 2020 article, Evers was quoted as saying: “We’re always going to need police service” and that “to completely defund police departments … that isn’t going to work.’”

Later, as noted, Evers provided more than $100 million to law enforcement through federal relief funds.

. . .

But that veto simply kept the status quo – it was not a proactive step by Evers to force or encourage cities and counties to cut law enforcement.

What’s more, Evers has flatly stated he does not support defunding the police, and directed $100 million in pandemic aid to law enforcement.

So, the statement “contains an element of truth but ignores critical facts that would give a different impression.”

That’s what we call Mostly False.