Scott Wiener's Votes Disrespect Colin Kaepernick's Protest

In a recent debate with Jane Kim, his opponent in the race for San Francisco’s seat in the State Senate, Scott Wiener said he respects Colin Kaepernick’s protest of the national anthem. But while he’s served on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, Wiener has repeatedly voted against police reform.

Wiener has had multiple chances to stand with people of color in San Francisco calling for police reform. But every time there’s been a contested vote on police reform, he’s voted on the side of the Police Officers Association against reform:

  • December 16, 2014Wiener opposed a non-binding resolution calling for police reform in the wake of the killing of Michael Brown and the protests in Ferguson. The Examiner later reported that the lobbyist for the SF Police Officer Association threatened to break off ties with any Supervisor who supported the resolution.

As Mark Leno’s failed attempt to make modest reforms to the Police Officers Bill of Rights shows, any meaningful police reform efforts in California will require state legislators who are willing to stand up to the law enforcement lobbyists. Leno has been a champion for police reform, and this November voters will decide whether Jane Kim or Scott Wiener will replace him.

Here in San Francisco, there is a growing consensus that the Police Officers Association is the biggest barrier to police reform. Wiener has been endorsed by the POA in every election he’s run, and every time there’s been a contested vote on police reform, he’s voted with the POA against reform.

So it’s great that Wiener respects Colin Kaepernick’s protest calling for police reform. But Scott Wiener's actions as an elected official disrespect Kaepernick and everyone else who is working on the reforms needed to address the crisis of police shootings of unarmed black and brown Americans.

And hey, @kaepernick7: if you’re serious about making police reform happen in California and San Francisco, then we need you to support Jane Kim for State Senate! Jane has a track record of standing up to the Police Officers Association. She voted for all of the reforms listed above. Will you join us in standing with Jane?

  • The League
    commented 2016-10-13 08:44:17 -0700
    @djconnel: we’re happy to provide you more details on Wiener’s votes against police reform. Here’s the ACLU’s take on why the Leno bill was so important. They talk about how California’s police transparency law is worse than places like Texas, Kentucky, and Utah:
    Wiener wants Leno’s job but he opposes the signature police reform measure that Leno has been working on. That’s a deal breaker for us, and it we think it should be for anyone else who is serious about police reform.

    And if you want to see an unjustified proposal, check out Wiener’s resolution saying that police staffing levels should be based on population:
    And then check out this Budget and Legislative Analyst report that finds “a minimum staffing level based on population is not considered a rigorous and analytical staffing methodology. Rather, any changes to the SFPD’s minimum staffing level should be based on a workload-based assessment that accounts for department-specific conditions, as well as a comprehensive
    examination of historical workload data.”
  • Rupert Clayton
    commented 2016-10-11 16:54:49 -0700
    @dan Connelly: You mischaracterize Weiner’s “No” votes as if he declined to support ineffective proposals for police reform.

    If Wiener was such a strong opponent of police violence, why did he vote against opening up records of misconduct? Why did he vote against making a small portion of SFPD’s budget contingent on demonstrating progress on hiring, discipline and the Use of Force policy? Perhaps because he calculated that the POA endorsement was of more value to him than the votes of those who care strongly about police misconduct and impunity.
  • Dan Connelly
    commented 2016-10-11 12:57:27 -0700
    It may be trendy to dump on the police, but while police brutality is a terrible thing, and racial profile is corrosive, when there’s gang killings in your neighborhood, or someone breaking into houses on your block, or phones getting stolen at gunpoint, suddenly the police seem less objectionable. Violence and crime are real and present dangers, and scapegoating the police, or bleeding them of resources over vague proposals for “affordable housing” which get mired in cronyism and corruption, may not be the best way to address issues of stereotyping and bias which clearly extend well beyond SFPD (look @ Trump’s polling numbers). I think criticizing Weiner for no other reason than that he failed to support every measure which is claimed, justifiably or not, to solve this problem is unfair. The devil’s in the details and we want our legislatures to critically assess every piece of legislation on its detailed merits, not shoot from the hip for political appearance.
  • The League
    published this page in Blog 2016-10-11 10:00:26 -0700

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