In recent years, radical left-wing lawyers, many supported by billionaire George Soros, have won elected office across America. They have become district attorneys and state’s attorneys in many major American cities. These so-called Soros prosecutors, or progressive prosecutors, have betrayed the public trust and made our communities less safe. Instead of fighting crime, they are abetting it.
Soros prosecutors are refusing to charge criminals for shoplifting, vagrancy, and entire categories of misdemeanors. In Chicago, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx allows theft under $1,000 to go unpunished. In Manhattan, District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. refuses to enforce laws against prostitution. In Baltimore, State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby has unilaterally declared the war on drugs “over” and is refusing to criminally charge drug dealers and heroin addicts, in the middle of the worst drug crisis in American history. For a time, Los Angeles DA George Gascon even stopped enforcing laws against disturbing the peace, resisting arrest, and making criminal threats.
In cities where they’ve taken office, progressive prosecutors coddle even violent, career criminals, often agreeing to sweetheart deals and routinely circumventing three-strikes laws. The city of San Francisco, where Chesa Boudin is the district attorney, provides a tragic case study in what can happen as a result.
Last year, a career criminal named Troy McAlister faced a well-deserved life sentence as a result of California’s three-strikes law. His long and violent rap sheet included multiple robberies, thefts, and an attempted carjacking. Instead of permanently taking this criminal off the streets, Chesa Boudin cut a deal with McAlister that resulted in his release. McAlister went on to commit a series of crimes leading to three separate arrests. Boudin refused to charge him each time.
Then, on New Year’s Eve last year, McAlister stole a car, robbed a bakery, and then ran over two women crossing the road. One was a 60-year-old homeless woman named Elizabeth Platt. The other was a 27-year-old Japanese immigrant named Hanako Abe. Both women died from their injuries. Hanako, Elizabeth, and many other Americans have lost their lives because Chesa Boudin and Soros prosecutors like him refuse to do their job.
The malfeasance of these legal arsonists has contributed to an unprecedented surge in murder nationwide. Last year, the United States suffered a 25 percent increase in murder, the largest single-year rise in history. The murder rate has now reached the highest level since the 1990s. Soros prosecutors are not simply negligent; they are culpable in this disintegration of public safety. Indeed, their jurisdictions have disproportionally contributed to the violent crime wave.
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner systematically reduced his jurisdiction’s prison population by 30 percent through aggressive criminal leniency policies — and that was before COVID protocols resulted in additional reductions. Predictably, murder in the city skyrocketed over 40 percent after Krasner took office, reaching the highest level in three decades. This year, murder in Philadelphia is on pace to rise another 34 percent.
Other Soros prosecutors have delivered similar results. Last year, murder rose 50 percent in Chicago and 38 percent in Los Angeles. In New York City, murder increased 44 percent and shootings soared 97 percent. In 2020, the murder rate in Baltimore was higher than El Salvador’s or Guatemala’s — nations from which citizens can claim asylum purely based on gang violence and murder. In California, America’s richest and most populous state, murder rose 31 percent.
Soros prosecutors also refused to do their job when more than 500 violent riots were breaking out across the nation, thousands of police were being injured, and up to $2 billion in property damage was being inflicted. They irresponsibly unleashed countless rioters and looters, often without charges. As of January, over 90 percent of arrested rioters in Portland, responsible for 100 days of unrest, still had not been charged.
These courtroom extremists have accomplished this destruction by transforming prosecutorial discretion into prosecutorial nullification. District attorneys and state’s attorneys are empowered with the discretion to emphasize or deemphasize the importance and severity of certain criminal prosecutions. They are not, however, empowered with unilateral fiat to abolish laws they don’t like. The legislative branch is solely empowered to repeal laws, not prosecutors.
On the rare occasions when criminals go to trial in jurisdictions with Soros prosecutors, they might as well have two advocates in the room, while the public and the victims have none. These renegade lawyers have turned the criminal justice system into the criminal’s justice system.
It should be clear from this litany of failures that the only good Soros prosecutor is a defeated Soros prosecutor. These radicals have no business holding any public office anywhere in our nation. Every single one of them should be recalled, removed, and replaced. It’s very simple: if you don’t want to prosecute crime, you shouldn’t be a prosecutor.