Gangs have increased by 40% since Obama took office

Bobby Rush
Bobby Rush

Newt Gingrich appeared on Candy Crowley’s State of the Union with Democratic Congressman Bobby Rush.

Throughout the 1960s, Rush was involved in the civil-rights movement and worked in civil-disobedience campaigns in the Southern United States. After co-founding the Illinois chapter of the Black Panthers in 1968, he served as its “defense minister”. Rush has made statements saying “We needed to arm ourselves” and referring to the police as “pigs”.

He is U.S. Representative for Illinois’s 1st congressional district, serving since 1993. The district is located principally on the South Side of Chicago with its population percentage being 65% African-American, higher than any other congressional district in the nation.

A member of the Democratic Party, he holds the distinction of being the only person to defeat President Barack Obama in an election, as he did in the 2000 Democratic primaries.

NEWT GINGRICH: This fits perfectly with what I was going to say earlier. You have a congressman — and I respect Bobby Rush. You have a congressman who represents the most violent city in America. You have a congressman who represents the city in which over 500 people were killed last year, 74 percent of them African-American. You have a congressman who represents the city which is 80 percent of the killings, according to police, are by gangs. Gangs have increased — let me finish. Gangs have increased by 40 percent since this president was elected. There is no federal program to stop it. No one wants to have an honest conversation about it. And so you have a congressman whose own district is bleeding, who puts on a hoodie as a symbolic act, but he doesn’t do anything about the gangs in his own district.

REP. BOBBY RUSH (D-IL): Wait a minute.

CROWLEY: Hang on. First of all, congressman, let me let you —

RUSH: That’s a charge, Newt, that is not going to hold, doesn’t hold water. I have been working relentlessly since I’ve been in Congress, even when you were the speaker of the House and didn’t want to hear any of these matters. I have been working on trying to deal with this violence. I’m astounded and ashamed about this violence. But this is also systemic to an overall problem. Chicago will take care of this violence. That’s one of the reasons why on a Friday, the 26th, we’re having this National Summit on Urban Violence. This was before the verdict we had planned this. The congressional black caucus is coming into Chicago so that we can work on solutions to this problem.

Now, what I challenge you to, Newt, especially today, I want to challenge you and your Republican cohorts. Today is a Sunday. Today is a day of worship. We serve and worship the same God. In Michael 6:3 and 8, the words tell us that we should love justice, do mercy, and walk humbly with our God. Now, for those folks who are cheering the George Zimmerman verdict, I would challenge you and the rest of the, let us honor, and let us lift up the spirit of the words of Micah 6:8 to work together to have the conversation, but not just have the conversation. Let us deal with the disenfranchisement, and let us deal with the distortions as it relates to our nation.- Real Clear Politics