Congressional Record Vol. 169, No. 44
(Senate - March 8, 2023) PDF

  Mrs. HYDE-SMITH. Mr. President, I rise to express my support also for 
the resolution of disapproval of the new soft-on-crime law approved by 
the District of Columbia City Council. The resolution represents my 
chance to say: Enough is enough.

  Today, Americans feel increasingly unsafe. It is not hard to 
understand why, since it has become impossible to disregard or dismiss 
the unraveling of law and order across the country over the past few 

  Whether it is the lack of law enforcement on the border, anti-police 
rhetoric, or weakened punishments for the violent crimes, Americans 
know the shift away from law and order, right and wrong, is tearing all 
the fabric of their communities. Crime is at a 25-year high across the 
entire country.

  Unfortunately, my home State of Mississippi is not immune from this 
trend. Our capital, Jackson, has recorded more than 100 homicides for 3 
consecutive years.

  It is the same song, different verse in our Nation's very own 
Capital, where overall crime is up 25 percent since last year. In fact, 
Washington, DC's murder rate is 34 percent higher today than this time 
last year. Auto thefts are up 110 percent in this city.

  What has the response been from the Democratic leadership? Well, it 
certainly has not made public safety a priority. There is a good reason 
the Senate is considering a resolution of disapproval against the DC 
Council's Revised Criminal Code Act of 2022. With DC's growing record 
of lawlessness, the city council voted to eliminate mandatory minimum 
sentences and reduce penalties for crimes like robbery, carjacking, 
home invasion, burglary, and more. These are violent crimes that leave 
victims traumatized, injured, or worse--dead.

  So why is the instinct to protect the criminal--to signal that the 
penalties for violating the law are being eased?

  This law will put residents, constituents, tourists, Federal workers, 
and elected officials directly in harm's way. Rather than holding them 
accountable for their own actions, the DC Council would prefer to let 
these violent criminals go back to the streets and commit the same 
violent crimes. Is it any wonder Washington, DC, has a police 
recruitment and retention problem?

  At the same time, those responsible for enforcing our justice system 
seem more interested in carrying out ``justice'' based on politics. The 
Biden administration's Justice Department, for example, appears to be 
laser-focused on parents at local school board meetings, pro-life 
Americans exercising their right to protest, and spying on Catholic 
Americans, while taking a nothing-to-see-here approach to threats of 
violence against sitting Justices at the Supreme Court or attacks on 
pregnancy centers. If things continue this way, Americans will start to 
wonder if their safety and protection is determined by their political 

  Mr. President, public safety should not be a political issue. It is 
not virtue signaling to lessen punishments for violent criminals; it is 
just dangerous. It is not progressive to pretend the breakdown in 
border security and subsequent flood of fentanyl aren't contributing to 
the surges in the crime and death; it is nonsensical.

  Americans who live in the greatest Nation in the world at the very 
least deserve to feel safe. We deserve to live in a country of law and 
order. Yes, it is time to say ``enough is enough'' to the radical 
policies embraced by the Democratic Party that have only resulted in 
more crime, more fear and more tragedies.

  I yield the floor.