NYPD spokesman blasts Trump budget for leaving "nation's top terror target hobbled"

Trump may talk tough about terrorism, but New York City is worried that his budget leaves them vulnerable

By Matthew Rozsa

Staff Writer

Published March 17, 2017 2:45PM (EDT)

 (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

President Donald Trump's administration may like to refer to his new budget as a "hard power budget," but New York City's leaders are concerned that it may be quite soft on terrorism.

New York Police Department Commissioner James O'Neill took to Twitter to denounce Trump's plan as one that would leave "entire counterterrorism apparatus in nation's top terror target hobbled," while Mayor Bill de Blasio himself said "Let me be clear: New York City is in the crosshairs of the president's budget. New Yorkers will be hurt by it."

The proposed federal budget would reduce Homeland Security funding to the NYPD by $190 million, according to The New York Daily News, despite New York City being the subject of more than 20 terrorist plot since 2002. As O'Neill told the newspaper, "This funding is absolutely critical. It is the backbone of our entire counterterrorism apparatus. It is the cornerstone of preparedness and prevention against terrorist threats, and enables us to do what we can do to keep the city secure."

In addition, as The Daily Beast reported, the new budget would eliminate federal funding transfers to so-called "sanctuary cities," which allow undocumented immigrants to stay there unmolested.

Trump's draconian budget toward New York City is particularly noteworthy considering that the NYPD estimates it will cost them $500,000 per day to secure Trump Tower when the president chooses to use that building. In December, Mayor Bill de Blasio sent a bill of $35 million to the federal government to compensate for protecting the city during the period when Trump was still president-elect.

By Matthew Rozsa

Matthew Rozsa is a staff writer at Salon. He received a Master's Degree in History from Rutgers-Newark in 2012 and was awarded a science journalism fellowship from the Metcalf Institute in 2022.

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