Psaki Passes The Blame For Crime Spikes Like A Hot Potato

White House press secretary Jen Psaki passed the buck Monday when asked whether “soft on crime” policies are to blame for the increase in crime and smash-and-grab robberies Psaki responded by saying that there is a"range of reasons.”

Smash-and-grab looters that have been targeting stores across the nation in recent weeks have taken thousands in merchandise in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Seattle, New York, and Minneapolis.

During a White House briefing Monday, Psaki was asked whether she thought cities were experiencing an increase in crime because prosecutors have adopted a "soft on crime" approach.

"I would say, we have seen, I’m not going to attribute the reasoning from here," Psaki said. "What I will tell you is we have seen an increase in crime over the course of the pandemic. There are a range of reasons for that."

She claimed that the White House is focused on "what we can do to address it."

"The president has proposed additional funding in the budget to make sure local police departments and cops have the funding they need," Psaki said. "We also have worked directly with police departments in areas where they are seeing the highest impact of the crime, the retail theft—which we have great concern about."

"That’s what our focus is on currently -- is action and doing what we can to make sure the funding is out there to the communities that need it the most,” she added.

Psaki was pressed about specific incidents of criminals being released from prison back to the streets without prosecution—citing the man who burned down the Fox News "All American Christmas" tree in New York City last week—and whether President Biden felt that was "good governing.

She responded by saying "I think I’ve spoken"If you have specific—and the actions taken for specific cases, I would point to the local police departments or the Department of Justice."

Even still the White House is standing by its push to end cash bail – saying the decision to hold defendants should be based on the threat they pose to society, and not their ability to pay bail.

"Ending cash bail will not automatically put people charged with crimes on the streets," a White House official said last month. "It just means that whether you get bail should be based on the threat you pose, and not how much money you have in your bank account."There shouldn’t be a separate criminal justice system for wealthy Americans," the official added.

As for the spike in crime, Psaki blamed COVID-19 and guns as "root" causes for the increase in organized retail theft.

"One of the root reasons of crime in communities is guns and gun violence, and we’ve seen that statistically around the country," Psaki, adding that a "root cause in a lot of communities is the pandemic."

A White House official said earlier this month that the administration is monitoring reports of looting and said that officials have seen "some of the disturbing videos documenting these thefts."

"This sort of conduct is absolutely unacceptable, and we’re using every resource at our disposal to support local authorities and crack down on organized retail theft," the official said.

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