Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Chief Craig denied being a Republican after Trump praised him last year

Posted By on Tue, May 11, 2021 at 12:44 PM

click to enlarge DPD Police Chief James Craig. - STEVE NEAVLING
  • Steve Neavling
  • DPD Police Chief James Craig.

Detroit Police Chief James Craig, who is considering running for governor, said during a press conference Monday that he’s been a Republican for a long time.

“Many of you already knew that,” Craig told reporters after announcing he’s retiring. “Some of my team already knew it.”



But in September 2020, Craig said he was not a Republican. Craig made the comment after then-President Donald Trump praised him for his handling of protests.

“I’m an American,” Craig told The Detroit News at the time. “Why is everything left or right? I get support from all sides — except the anarchists who want to undermine our government. I’m an American police officer who claims no party but relies on doing what is right and common sense.”

He added, “I align with both conservatives and liberals, depending on the issues.”

To be sure, Craig’s position on a number of hot-button issues – COVID-19 restrictions, abortion, health care, LGBTQAI+ rights, MAGA, election laws — is unknown, because he’s rarely made his political views public. When asked Monday whether he believed Trump’s false claims about widespread election fraud, Craig declined to answer.

“I’m not going to talk about politics. There will be a proper time and place for that,” Craig said.

Craig’s party affiliation has been the subject of debate. He frequently appears on Fox News to malign Black Lives Matter protesters and defend police, and on Monday he was interviewed by Newsmax, a right-wing news network that has peddled conspiracy theories, conservative propaganda and pseudoscience.

In 2014, Craig appeared on the cover of the National Rifle Association’s magazine promoting gun rights. Craig famously said he believed Detroit would be safer if more people had guns.

On Monday, Mayor Mike Duggan said he would not support Craig if he runs for governor.

“I think Gretchen Whitmer has been the best partner the city has had in decades, and I will be supporting her,” Duggan said. “The chief and I disagree on a number of issues, and I suspect that is one of them.”

Republicans are desperate for a formidable candidate. None of the five people who have created campaign committees to run so far have statewide name recognition.

Whoever runs against Whitmer will have to raise a lot of money. At the end of 2020, Whitmer had $3.5 million in the campaign account. Craig has no experiencing raising money.

Stay on top of Detroit news and views. Sign up for our weekly issue newsletter delivered each Wednesday.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at letters@metrotimes.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

June 9, 2021

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In Detroit

© 2021 Detroit Metro Times - Contact Us

Website powered by Foundation