Patrick Henry pushes back on accusation he wants to ‘defund the police’

Republican Party of Florida ads claim Patrick Henry has pledged to “defund the police.”

But the Daytona Beach Democrat, fighting for the House District 26 seat Rep. Elizabeth Fetterhoff ousted him from in 2018, said such claims distort the truth. He attacked the Republican lawmaker for delivering a dishonest messaging missive. And even one area Sheriff backing the Republican has come to Henry’s defense.

“It should come as no surprise that my Republican opponent Elizabeth Fetterhoff is taking a page out of Donald Trump’s book as she lies and attempts to distort my record on policing,” he said.

“Since serving on the Daytona Beach City Commission, I have always been supportive of law enforcement and providing them with the resources necessary to do their job and keep our community safe.”

The semantic argument comes as Republicans in Florida stress support for law enforcement ahead of the General Election and after a summer when incidents of police-related violence led to Black Lives Matter protests in the streets. Gov. Ron DeSantis has proposed legislation cracking down on anti-police protests.

While both Fetterhoff and Henry have said they do not support calls to defund police, the phrase made

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