New York Mayoral candidate Eric Adams called himself the ‘Biden of Brooklyn’ at White House Monday after meeting with President Joe Biden about gun crimes – and says the topic of whether Biden wants more police on the beat ‘didn’t come up.’
Adams, the Brooklyn Borough president who is heavily favored in the mayor’s race after his messy primary win, joined mayors, law enforcement and security officials as Biden seeks to get a handle on a surge in gun violence nationwide.
‘You know they call me the Biden of Brooklyn,’ Adams said outside the White House following his meeting with the president, Attorney General Merrick Garland, and other local leaders.
‘You can just tell when someone is not trying to rush you through the meeting,’ he said. He called Biden a ‘plain talk person’ and said it was ‘a pleasure having him as the president.
‘You know they call me the Biden of Brooklyn,’ Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said at the White House Monday
With Democrats showing signs of political damage for the defend-the-police movement – something Biden has long said he does not support – Adams called for moving cops to the streets from clerical work and having more of them walk the beat solo rather than in larger groups.
But when asked by DailyMail.com whether Biden himself urged local leaders to get more cops on the street, Adams responded: ‘That conversation didn’t come up in our discussion and I think he could better answer that question.’
Nevertheless, the guest list at Monday’s meeting underlined distance the White House wants to put between Biden and the defund movement.
Adams said a ‘meeting before the meeting’ – where local officeholders and other officials caught up before meeting with Biden himself – was an ‘extremely productive’ part.
‘The president is making it clear, he’s going to redefine the ecosystem of public safety, and that that includes identifying the role of police, schools, families, resources, employment, this is where we need to go as a country,’ he said.
He called for responding to ‘underlying causes’ of violence.
‘How do we have a prison system with 30 per cent of the people, the inmates, are dyslexic,’ he said. ‘That means the real crime didn’t take place only on the streets. That took place int he Department of Education across America,’ he said.
Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, who also attended, pointed directly to her own efforts to get a boost in police funding amid criticism linking Democrats to the defund-the-police movement.
‘That’s why my budget includes 100 new officers, 200 new police cadets, and next year I think we’ll actually be able to do a little bit more,’ she said. ‘But it also includes violence prevention efforts to the tune of $59 million. From a city like ours, people care about safety. They care about fair policing and justice, and they care that police and the community work together,’ she said.
In his own comments, Adams was less direct – although his role as a former transit police officers and NYPD officer – his presence underlined a similar message.
‘I rode the trains alone. I don’t know why I have four or five officers congregated around a booth area,’ he said. ‘So let’s look at how we’re using our police officers and then make that determination of do we need more – that question is still a question mark.’
Police are pictured at the scene of a shooting where 13-year-old Jaryan Elliot was killed in the Bronx on Sunday. It was one of six shootings reported around the city in the span of 14 hours
A New York City police officer took photos of the crime scene on Sunday
‘I think we have improper deployment of police officers,’ he continued. ‘We could do a better job in deploying our personnel and making sure we become more proactive to prevent crime.’
Also attending were police chiefs from Chicago, which has experienced a surge in gun violence, Memphis, and Biden’s home town of Wilmington.
Adams also mentioned some of the shocking examples of violence in New York. ‘We can’t become so idealistic we’re not realistic,’ he said. ‘These are real problems of families being fearful of violence. I had a 13-year-old child shot, assassinated, in the Bornx. You know, a 10-year-old child was shot and killed in Rockaway. These are real problems,’ he said.