Talk show host Bill Maher said he supports efforts to demilitarize the police and to end police brutality but said Democrats are standing in their own way on the issue.
In the wake of protests across the country, Maher described taking funds from police departments and reallocating them to community service efforts as “a very good thing [and a] good idea.”
The “Real Time” host said, however, the movement’s branding and the mantra “Defund the police” do more harm than good on the issue and in Democrats’ greater political battle against President Trump.
“Liberals want to take police money, police funds and divert it to community services, which sounds like a very good thing, good idea,” he said per Fox News. “But they’re calling it ‘Defund the police,’ which sounds bad!”
“That’s so ‘Democrats’ for you,” he continued. “You know, they must have meetings to be this f***ing stupid about politics. ‘Hey guys, we’re making some headway here, how could we turn this into something that makes people have to vote for Trump?'”
Fox News adds:
Later, during the show’s panel discussion, Maher reiterated that the “defunding” branding was a “terrible way to put it,” noting how “only a third” of black Americans support the idea of defunding the police. He also pointed to the ousting of Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey from a Black Lives Matter protest because the mayor said he wouldn’t abolish the city’s police department.
“I worry that Democrats are wandering into another purity test that’s not going to serve them well,” Maher said. “And it’s going to be about how much you want to get rid of police altogether.”
Maher went on to praise Democratic lawmakers for their “very good” police reform bill, but mocked “woke liberals” for the uproar over top Democrats wearing kente cloths in honor of George Floyd.
Concluding his remarks, Maher said: “The Democrats … they’re horrible. They put themselves in this no-win box and they did it to themselves.”