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Tool of the Week: Barnes, tool of the defunders

Empower Wisconsin | Feb. 21,  2022

Amid soaring violent crime, the blush is off the weed of the “Defund the Police” movement.

A recent poll found 75 percent of Americans believe the extreme left’s war on law enforcement caused the violent crime wave.

So it’s no wonder that radical U.S. Senate candidates like Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes are backing away from the movement.

But the Democrat can’t hide from his past — or the people funding his campaign.

As the Washington Free Beacon reported, the single largest source of contributions to Barnes’ U.S. Senate campaign last year was from Lead the Way 2022, a far left joint fundraising committee. Lead the Way is benefactor to “some of the most radically left congressional candidates” and vehement supporters of defunding police.

Barnes’ biggest campaign supporters are outspoken leaders in the Defund movement. Lead the Way’s umbrella organization, Way to Lead, is led by a 10-person advisory board that includes high-profile activists in the movements to gut police funding and abolish Immigration and Customs Enforcement, according to the group’s website.

Greisa Martinez Rosas, executive director of the radical group United We Dream, is one of Way to Lead’s advisors. She has denounced the police and immigration enforcement agencies as rapists and white supremacists.

Jessica Byrd, who leads the Electoral Justice Project, has described defunding the police as “tak[ing] money in a place that is violent, that is not working, is proven to kill black people, move it into a place that means we want black people to live and to thrive.”

Maurice Mitchell also serves on the Way to Lead board. Mitchell is national director of the far left Working Families Party (WFP), an organizational partner of Way to Lead. WFP, which has endorsed Barnes, has contributed at least $5,000 to his Senate campaign, according to an Empower Wisconsin review of Barnes’ campaign finance reports.

The Working Families Party in 2020 launched its Justice Fund, providing direct financial support to liberal candidates committed to defunding the police. As the New York Post reports, the WFP is pressuring candidates who seek their endorsement in 2022 elections to shun support from law enforcement unions representing beat cops and correction officers.

Barnes is now hiding in plain sight. He’s hiding from his photo in which he’s smiling as he holds an Abolish ICE T-shirt — a photo he tweeted and deleted. He’s hiding from all of the endorsements from cop haters.

Barnes’ campaign flack told the Free Beacon the candidate does not support defunding the police.

The radicals looking to buy the leftist lieutenant governor one of Wisconsin’s U.S. Senate seats aren’t paying for law enforcement supporters.

Barnes is a tool of the defunders.

And this week he’s Empower Wisconsin’s Tool of the Week.

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