Washington, D.C. – If you thought Mandela Barnes couldn’t be more soft on crime and have more disdain towards American police than he already does, then think again. As reported by Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Barnes voluntarily did six interviews with a Russian state-run propaganda outlet RT, formerly Russia Today, denouncing U.S. police. WHAT?!
- In May 2015, for instance, Barnes told RT that police brutality is a “total epidemic” in the United States. A month earlier, he posted a screenshot of his interview with RT on the Baltimore protests, commenting, “People are tired of being targets.”
- In July 2016, after five police officers were shot dead in Dallas in retaliation against alleged racial discrimination by police, Barnes told RT that “police officers across the country haven’t reformed their patterns and practices” and that “police officers are over-exercising their badges.”
- Barnes then thanked RT on Twitter for interviewing him. RT labels itself “Russia state-affiliated media” on its Twitter homepage.
- In September 2016, Barnes said that Black Lives Matter protests that turn violent are a “human reaction” to the police. In that same interview, he says that if police officers are Black, it “doesn’t mean they are 100% behind the community.”
As one may expect, earlier this year, the U.S. State Department said RT and another Russian-funded outlet are “critical elements in Russia’s disinformation and propaganda ecosystem.”
“The overall goals are to manipulate and weaken adversaries,” the State Department said in August 2021. “The main tactics for weakening adversaries are to discredit, divide, disarm, and demoralize them.”
Reminder: Barnes has ZERO active law enforcement endorsements.
Statement from NRSC Spokeswoman Lizzie Litzow: “Why would someone, specifically someone in American politics, voluntarily go on Russian state-run propaganda TV and trash U.S. law enforcement?! Because they are reckless. Mandela Barnes was knowingly being a puppet for a foreign dictator in a Russian disinformation scheme and doesn’t think that’s wrong? He’s a dangerous Democrat and has no place in the U.S. Senate.”