How Being 'Tough on Crime' Became Political Liability

Kamala Harris recently dropped out of the presidential race after months of attacks from the left for her “tough-on-crime” record as San Francisco's district attorney and as California's attorney general.

A few years ago, the idea that being tough on crime would be a liability – not an asset – was unthinkable for both Democrats and Republicans.

Bill Clinton, during the 1992 presidential race, interrupted his campaign so he could return to Arkansas to witness the execution of a mentally disabled man. During Harris' 2014 reelection campaign for attorney general, she actively sought – and won – the endorsements of more than 50 law enforcement groups en route to a landslide victory.

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