Recent legal opinions and political provocations of Mayor Quinton Lucas on the topic of police "local control" have infuriated Republicans at the state level.
As usual and behind an MSM paywall, the mayor talks tough for a friendly audience . . .
Money line . . .
“I think that Kansas City, Missouri, or a set of plaintiffs … should actually consider pursuing litigation to get us out of this situation,” Lucas told The Star Editorial Board.
He argues that the current governance model for the Kansas City Police Department violates the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause, which prohibits state and local governments from denying any individual equal protection of the law and which has been essential to the protection of civil rights."
Thankfully, AWESOME TKC READERS & INSIDERS offer an important counterpoint in this message . . .
"The mayor obviously doesn't know what he's talking about . . . Or he's being extremely disingenuous by sharing his legal opinion. The current governance structure for the KCPD absolutely meets the requirements of the Equal Protection Clause and has withstood the test of time and repeated legal review. No one is being denied due process or equal representation. Even the geographic example the Mayor gives is irrelevant -- The Northland is, in fact, represented by the police board of commissioners -- Of which the mayor is a member."
About the push for local control . . .
"He's also ignoring the will of local voters. A majority of voters in KC don't want council control of the police because they know that would be a disaster.
"Look at the Water Department, that's a great example of why Mayor & Council seizing authority over law enforcement would be a horrible idea that could destroy Kansas City.
"What the mayor is really doing is attempting to bypass voters and other elected officials by threatening to go through the courts . . . "
Insider explanation . . .
"The legal threat for local control is counterproductive at best. Words matter. What he's telling Republicans in Jeff City is that he wants to bypass their role and strong arm his agenda. If he's going to take the route there's so many ways the Missouri GOP can push back. From low-income housing credits to stimulus relief . . . He just picked a fight he can't finish at a time when KCMO is going to need help from state government."
Another consequence . . .
"If he wants to take this tact then he should just call the lobbyists for KC back home because they'll be shut out of every important office in Jeff City. Shaking his fist at the Republicans is just a bad idea and whoever is advising him on this strategy is doing a disservice not only to the mayor but also the residents of Kansas City."
Developing . . .