Warren pens op-ed calling for reduction in police presence in schools

Warren pens op-ed calling for reduction in police presence in schools
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Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenChris Wallace: Trump struggling with attacks on 'shape-shifter' Harris Markey riffs on JFK quote in new ad touting progressive bona fides Howard Kurtz: Kamala Harris 'getting walk on water coverage' by media after VP pick MORE (D-Mass.) penned an op-ed Wednesday in Essence in which she says "enough is enough" with the nation's school-to-prison pipeline.

The 2020 presidential hopeful starts her piece by zeroing in on recent footage of a New Mexico police officer using excessive force on an 11-year-old girl at a middle school.

"That video highlighted the unfortunate reality — that young black and brown students across the country live with this threat every day, and reopened conversation around a central question: why was a police officer there to begin with?" Warren writes.

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Warren cites that 14 million American students attend a school with a police officer but "without a single counselor, social worker, psychologist, or nurse."

This environment, the Massachusetts senator asserts, only further serves the school-to-prison pipeline, in which students are introduced to the justice system for in-school infractions that could easily be handled by the school.

"Enough is enough. No student should have to learn in an environment where there is a threat of incarceration," Warren writes. 

Later in the piece, Warren rehashes her policy that she unveiled last week: $800 billion to public schools that will be "paid for by a two-cent wealth tax on fortunes above $50 million."

The plan would also allocate an additional $100 billion to “Excellence Grants” that would go to "after-school arts programs and school-based student mentoring programs."

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Warren also touches on her criminal justice reform policy that she introduced in October. 

"We need to transition from a punitive to a rehabilitative system —  by adopting discipline policies for our schools that draw students in rather than pushing them out," Warren writes, adding that "a school that polices, criminalizes, and neglects our children’s fundamental needs is a school that has failed to live up to our promise."

While not laying out anything new with regard to the politician's beliefs or major plans, the op-ed is the Warren campaign's latest appeal to black voters, a bloc that Warren will need to do better with if she wants to win the Democratic nomination.

A recent ABC News–The Washington Post poll showed that former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHarris to host virtual Hollywood campaign event co-chaired by Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling Trump plans to accept Republican nomination from White House lawn US seizes four vessels loaded with Iranian fuel MORE is still the favorite among black voters. In RealClearPolitics's average of polls, Biden leads Warren by roughly nine points.

Warren's op-ed is the second op-ed written by a Democratic presidential candidate published by Essence this week. The first one was authored by Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerOn The Money: Pelosi, Mnuchin talk but make no progress on ending stalemate | Trump grabs 'third rail' of politics with payroll tax pause | Trump uses racist tropes to pitch fair housing repeal to 'suburban housewife' The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden, Harris make first public appearance as running mates Booker hits back at Trump tweet, mocks misspelling of name MORE (D-N.J.) who wrote that he was the best candidate for mobilizing the black vote.