DNC - McCain Myth Buster: John McCain and Crime

Washington, DC--John McCain says he would keep our country safe.  But the reality is Senator McCain has voted repeatedly against giving our law enforcement officers the resources they need to protect our communities.  Senator McCain voted against funding for the successful COPS program and against interoperable communications equipment for first responders.  And instead of putting new officers on the street, helping officers prevent crime, and instituting tough new penalties for criminals, Senator McCain voted against the landmark 1994 Crime Bill.

John McCain may like to talk tough on the campaign trail, but for over two decades he has failed to deliver for the law enforcement community.


2005: McCain Voted For Corporate Tax Breaks Instead of $1 Billion for COPS. In 2005, McCain voted against providing $1 billion for the COPS program, offset by closing corporate tax loopholes. [2005 Senate Vote #70, 3/17/2005]

2003: McCain Voted Against $500 Million For Local Law Enforcement To Help Fight Drug-Related Crime.  McCain voted against providing $500 million for local law enforcement grants that provide money to rural law enforcement agencies to fight violent and drug-related crime. [2003 Senate Vote #6, 1/17/2003]

1995: McCain Voted To Eliminate the Successful COPS Program.  In 1995, McCain voted for the Republican Commerce-Justice spending bill which included a plan "to dismantle [the] cops-on-the-beat program" [COPS] and replace it with a "block grant program giving local governments control over how to spend crime-fighting money."  [1995 Senate Vote #591, 12/7/1995; Chicago Tribune, 12/8/1995]


McCain Voted To Eliminate A $100 Million Fund For Emergency Communications Equipment.  McCain voted to support an amendment that eliminates $1 billion Commerce Department interoperability grant program and transfers funds to Department of Homeland Security for an uncreated interoperability grant program; and eliminates $100 million fund for strategic reserves of communications equipment designed for deployment in event of major disaster. [2007 Senate Vote #66, 3/7/2007]


McCain Voted Against the Landmark $30.2 Billion 1994 Crime Bill.  In 1994, McCain voted against the Crime Bill which has authorized $30.2 billion over six years for crime related programs, including the hiring of additional police officers, prison building, helping communities prevent crime, and an assault weapons ban. [1994 Senate Vote #295, 8/25/1994]

McCain Said The Crime Bill Was "Ineffective" and "Ill-Conceived."  McCain repeatedly criticized the 1994 crime bill, calling it "an ineffective, ill conceived and pork laden piece of legislation."  He said he voted against final passage of the bill because of "the unfair allocation formulas and excessive spending that were added to the bill in conference and the weakening in conference of the tough law enforcement provisions that were included in the original bill adopted by the Senate." [Arizona Republic, 8/26/1994]