Up against a Republican-controlled House Judiciary Committee, Philadelphia DA Larry Krasner, a Democrat, moved closer to impeachment this week after a vote in the Republican-controlled State House Judiciary Committee.
On Tuesday, the members voted alongside party lines to adopt the articles of impeachment, with Republican legislators blaming Krasner for how he managed the city’s guns and violence problems, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Ellie Rushing, Chris Palmer, and Anna Orso.
The impeachment process will now proceed to the entire House, where GOP also holds a majority. The vote might take place as soon as Wednesday. The next procedure would be a trial in front of the GOP-controlled Senate, which would require two-thirds of senators to vote to remove him.
Democrats are opposed to the move.
“This is a heinous attempt to discredit the desire of Philadelphia’s Black and Brown electorate to improve the city’s criminal judicial system,” Sakira Cook, Co-Interim VP of Color of Change, stated in a statement to the Crime Report.
“Despite a disinformation campaign waged by the Fraternal Order of Police and right-wing radicals, District Attorney Larry Krasner was re-elected by a large majority of citizens just a year ago. His dismissal from office would have a huge detrimental influence on the city’s progress.”
The vote comes as Dems. are on the verge of regaining control of the House for the first time in twelve years. Krasner, who was originally elected in 2017, was easily re-elected last year and claims the impeachment effort is just political.
Krasner reiterated his dedication to public safety and defended his criminal justice and reform programs in a public statement made last month through the District Attorney’s office in response to the impeachment campaign:
“Criminologists understand what works to reduce crime. It is not love for the NRA, resistance to reasonable gun controls, or draconian punishments,” Krasner wrote. “It is investing in communities, fully funded public schooling, addiction and mental health treatment facilities, economic security, trade school, and higher learning opportunity, keeping parents in the communities (not in jail) if they have committed non-violent, non-serious crimes, and current police reform, along with other things.”
The full House vote is scheduled for this week.
Cook spoke on behalf of the Color of Change, saying, “Krasner has advocated for Black people, decreased racial inequalities in incarceration, pushed pretrial reform, and held police responsible for their misdeeds.”