Progressive DAs are losing big on west coast

New York Post
Like Love Haha Wow Sad Angry

Progressive prosecutors are under siege all along the West Coast, as voters in deep-blue metro areas express their frustration with more lenient approaches to crime.

The trend started with the 2022 recall ouster of San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin, which criminal justice reformers once labeled a pandemic-induced anomaly unlikely to repeat in other liberal-leaning bastions.

But this week’s district attorney election in the ultra-liberal Portland area made it clear the sentiment isn’t a one-off. Progressive District Attorney Mike Schmidt was defeated by tough-on-crime challenger Nathan Vasquez, a prosecutor in Schmidt’s own office and an independent who was previously a Republican.

Similar voter frustration has emerged in California, with Alameda’s DA Pamela Price facing a recall, and Los Angeles’ George Gascón fighting for reelection.

Altogether, the hurdles facing progressive prosecutors on the “left coast” illustrate a backswing in public sentiment and perceptions of crime since the 2020 killing of George Floyd prompted a national reckoning on racism and conversation around the costs of tough-on-crime politics.

Voters in urban centers like San Francisco, Portland, Los Angeles and Oakland now appear to have grown impatient with aspects of the progressive mantra about restorative justice. And California progressives are taking note of Oregon’s vote.

“Multnomah County and LA County are 600 miles apart and worlds different,” said political strategist Jim Ross, who worked on Boudin’s anti-recall campaign, adding though that the Portland outcome “is an indication, I think that Gascón is going to have a really tough race.”

The shift comes as major cities have, to varying degrees, struggled with similar issues: sprawling homeless tent encampments, surging fentanyl overdose deaths and concerns about brazen theft.

In the San Francisco Bay Area, moderate advocacy groups heavily funded by wealthy tech investors have spent millions criticizing the progressive approach to criminal justice reform — and to oust Boudin.


What Are Your Thoughts?


Chuck comes from a lineage of journalism. He has written for some of the webs most popular news sites. He enjoys spending time outdoors, bull riding, and collecting old vinyl records. Roll Tide!