Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli was at an event in Detroit today to show support for the sinking auto industry. Are you also wondering why someone from the Justice Department is giving a speech in Michigan about the economy?
Answer: Stimulus politics.
Perrelli appeared at the Detroit Police Department with Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, Chief of Police James Barren and other officials to announce a $10 million grant for more Detroit police officers.
The $787 billion stimulus package (known as the “Recovery Act”) contained $4 billion for the Department of Justice to distribute to local and tribal law enforcement and the COPS program. About $67 million from the Edward Byrne Memorial Assistance Grant Program is slated to go to Michigan, an important swing state in presidential elections that went for Obama. See the DOJ fact sheet here.
Said Perrelli at the event:
We all know what has been happening in our automobile communities across the country. In recent years, in Detroit and communities like it, you have seen factories close, jobs move overseas, and your friends and neighbors worry about what they’re going to do next. And we all know what can happen in times like these. You lose one factory, you lose hundreds of jobs, and people don’t have the extra money to spend they used to. It doesn’t take too much of this before a couple more stores have shuttered, a couple more homes are vacant, and the neighborhood might not feel like it used to. Maybe it even feels a little less safe. That is where you come in, and we at the Department of Justice need to stand with you.