FRAUD FACT CHECK: PolitiFact: “JD Vance Distorts Tim Ryan’s Words on the Criminal Justice System”

In case you missed it, a new PolitiFact analysis concluded that JD Vance’s claim that “Tim Ryan called police the new Jim Crow” was “Mostly False,” and that “Tim Ryan did not single out or even mention the police in relation to Jim Crow.”

In fact, Tim has brought home $467 million to support Ohio law enforcement and first responders as a member of the House Appropriations Committee and through his work helping pass the American Rescue Plan. He also co-sponsored legislation that would protect officers in the line of duty and introduced bipartisan legislation supported by the FOP and NAACP to bring state-of-the-art immersive training programs to help police departments improve officer safety and build community trust.

Meanwhile, JD Vance has routinely attacked law enforcement when it’s politically convenient for him. While campaigning, he called law enforcement “corrupt” and called to abolish the ATF — despite the agency’s critical role in helping local police departments take on major drug trafficking and illegal firearm cases, including here in Ohio

“San Francisco fraud JD Vance is once again lying about Tim’s record of supporting law enforcement as an obvious distraction from Vance’s own accomplishments — recruiting a Purdue Pharma mouthpiece to the epicenter of Ohio’s opioid epidemic and investing in and personally profiting from companies that outsourced manufacturing jobs to China,” said Tim for Ohio spokesperson Jordan Fuja. “While Vance was selling out Ohioans, Tim was working hard to make it easier for police to do their jobs safely and effectively, and securing nearly half a billion dollars to fund state and local law enforcement all over Ohio.”

Read highlights from PolitiFact:

  • J.D. Vance, the Republican nominee for an open Senate seat in Ohio, said his Democratic opponent has disparaged the police.
  • Vance’s comment appears to refer to remarks the Ohio congressman made in 2019, when running for president. But in that appearance at a town hall, Ryan did not single out or even mention the police in relation to Jim Crow…
  • Ryan instead referred to the entire criminal justice system and specifically mentioned sentencing disparities for people of color.
  • Racial justice advocates have long argued that the criminal justice system treats Americans differently, including by race and wealth. And Republicans have sometimes joined Democrats in seeking to ease racial disparities in the criminal justice system.
     
  • Earlier this year, the House passed legislation that would eliminate the federal sentencing disparity between drug offenses involving crack cocaine and powder cocaine. Those disparities have often been blamed for longer sentences for Black defendants than people of other races. More than two-thirds of House Republicans who were voting joined all Democrats in approving the measure.
  • In Ryan’s 2019 comments, his only mention of policing came when he touted “immersive training” for police. He introduced a related bill on that subject in 2019 that was aimed at improving community-police relations, officer safety, decision-making and de-escalation capabilities.
  • Ryan won backing for the bill from both the NAACP and the Fraternal Order of Police, two groups that are often on opposite sides of policing issues.