By CASEY HARPER
THE CENTER SQUARE
(The Center Square) – Voters largely support policies allowing police to detain suspects charged with violent crimes, a new poll shows. That’s in contrast to recent policies being enacted in Illinois.
Convention of States Action, along with Trafalgar Group, released the poll, which found that the vast majority of surveyed Americans do not support policies that keep law enforcement from detaining those accused of violent crimes.
The poll found that 95.6% of those surveyed “say they are less likely to vote for a candidate who supports policies which prevent police from detaining criminals charged with violent crimes, such as kidnapping and armed robbery.”
“Crime is the beneath-the-iceberg issue for voters in 2022, it’s absolutely clear in these numbers,” said Mark Meckler, president of the Convention of States. “Americans of all political backgrounds have a strong belief in protecting the innocent and punishing the guilty.”
Notably, 96.7% of Independent voters agree.
This comes as controversial city policies on police have gained nationwide attention. The newly passed SAFE-T Act in Illinois all but abolishes cash bail. Critics say this means that some charged with serious crimes like second-degree murder or kidnapping will be freed without a hearing.
Supporters of the law, set to take effect at the beginning of next year, point out it does not prohibit detention and that anyone deemed a flight risk can be detained. But critics of the law say proving a flight risk can be a difficult legal burden that won’t always happen, meaning violent criminals will quickly be back on the streets.
Pursuing suspected criminals has also become a controversial issue. In Chicago, police are restricted from pursuits for certain traffic violations.
A new law in Washington limits police officers from pursuing fleeing suspects. Suspected crimes have to meet a certain threshold, and word has spread quickly with suspects now fleeing police with no consequences.
The poll was carried out from Sept. 17-20 querying more than 1,000 likely midterm voters.