San Francisco’s radical progressive district attorney Chesa Boudin, the son of Weather Underground terrorists David Gilbert and Kathy Boudin (both of whom spent decades in prison for participation in violent crimes), and who was raised by Bill Ayers, a founding member of the Weather Underground and a political mentor of former President Barack Obama, was overwhelmingly recalled by voters who ousted him on Tuesday by a vote of 61 percent to 39 percent, according to the San Francisco Examiner, Fox News, and the Associated Press. The vote was less a personal rejection of Boudin than a referendum on the “progressive” prosecutorial policies that have led to an increase in crime in San Francisco and other cities run by progressives. Boudin’s ouster is the equivalent of a political earthquake that may have national repercussions.
It was just two years ago, after the 2020 elections, that progressives, like criminal procedure professor Beth Daley, wrote about the big electoral wins scored by prosecutors “running on progressive platforms that include ending mass incarceration and addressing police misconduct.” Daley cited the victories of progressive DAs like Cook County’s Kim Foxx, Los Angeles’ George Gascón, and Philadelphia’s Larry Krasner, as examples of voters’ desire for progressive criminal justice reform. Daley confidently predicted that “progressive policies are here to stay in some of the nation’s largest cities.”
Boudin’s recall — especially the size of the vote to recall him in a very progressive city — should send a signal to other progressive prosecutors and mayors and state legislators and governors and members of Congress who have enacted and imposed similarly progressive criminal justice measures and policies that the voters, even progressive voters, are fed up with rampant crime and the reluctance of progressive political leaders to do anything about it.
Many of the nation’s progressive elected prosecutors have benefited from the financial help of George Soros. According to news reports and the Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund, Soros has spent $40 million during the past decade to help elect 75 progressive prosecutors around the nation. Capital Research Center recently listed more than 20 district attorneys who received funds from Soros-controlled organizations. (Boudin is not on the list, but Foxx, Gascón, Krasner, and recently elected DA Alvin Bragg in Manhattan, are).
NPR reported today that Boudin’s recall spells trouble for progressive candidates in the midterm elections. Tough on crime, instead of “defund the police,” will be a winning issue in the fall, according to Matt Bennett of the liberal think tank Third Way. Even progressives, it seems, can only tolerate so much rampant crime in their cities.
It remains to be seen whether progressive incumbents will double down on their anti-crime enforcement platforms and measures or attempt to shift their positions to align with the zeitgeist emanating from yesterday’s San Francisco political earthquake. And only time will tell whether this progressive defeat in a progressive city will spur conservatives across the country to wage a cultural and political counterrevolutionary effort to legally and electorally take back control of institutions that the far-left first infiltrated and then controlled to the detriment of our republic.
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