For several weeks, the nation was gripped by the manhunt for double-murderer Danelo Cavalcante in Chester County, Pennsylvania.
Helicopters buzzed overhead, 911 alerts urged us to stay indoors; armored police officers manned checkpoints and searched vehicles. Schools were shut down for days.
As the former CEO of the Chester County Chamber and a public policy enthusiast, I felt compelled to share my thoughts on this event. I wrote about it and discussed it on talk radio and podcasts.
The response was mixed. While many appreciated my perspective, others criticized me for politicizing the tragedy.
— RVIVR (@RVIVRdotcom) September 26, 2023
This incident underscored a challenge for Republicans in the suburbs. It became evident that not only activist Democrats and progressive gadflies, but also some Republicans and Independents felt uncomfortable with my commentary, particularly during the ongoing manhunt.
Was it inappropriate to suggest flawed policies and misguided priorities had facilitated Cavalcante’s escape and prolonged his freedom?
Regardless of one’s opinion on my observations, the larger issue is the reluctance of some voters to hold Democratic politicians accountable for the practical implications of their ideology.
Perhaps these Republicans and Independents should consider the importance of demonstrating the cause-and-effect relationship between policies and outcomes and proposing viable alternatives.
Whether it’s escalating violent crime, unchecked illegal immigration, skyrocketing inflation, or declining academic performance among our children, it’s high time voters scrutinized Democrats’ track record.
Republicans must highlight these facts to swing voters who have largely handed control of many U.S. suburbs to Democrats and Joe Biden.
"The bigger issue is that some voters seem uncomfortable with holding Democratic politicians accountable for putting their ideology into practice," writes @PaSuburbsGuy at @RealClearPA: https://t.co/iJTWBLckAL
— Charles McElwee (@CFMcElwee) September 25, 2023
The Cavalcante case serves as a prime example.
When an illegal immigrant, previously arrested for domestic violence and allowed to return home, escapes from an understaffed prison in the same manner as another prisoner had just weeks prior, questions must be asked.
Why was there no K-9 unit available to track the escapee? Why did the district attorney delay releasing the murderer’s picture and requesting state police assistance? Why was a campaign fundraiser held while the escapee was still at large?
These are not just random occurrences; they are the results of policy decisions made with poor judgment. Is it wrong to scrutinize these facts and suggest policy decisions and dubious priorities led to these outcomes? Isn’t it our duty to critique what happened and propose solutions?
Today, violent crime is spilling over into our suburbs.
After years of Democrats criticizing police, supporting legislation that allows criminals to sue arresting officers, and implementing policies like no-cash bail and decriminalization of retail theft under $1,000, it’s no surprise our police forces are dwindling and our prisons are understaffed.
The Cavalcante incident has highlighted this challenge for suburban Republicans. They must find a way to responsibly discuss the consequences of Democratic policies and contrast them with the priorities of everyday voters dealing with these harmful effects.This article appeared in Our Patriot and has been published here with permission.