Nate Jackson / April 9, 2021

Democrats Ruin Cities — Ask St. Louis

After 70 years of one-party rule, the Gateway to the West is a shell of its former glory.

St. Louis represents a microcosm of one-party Democrat rule, and it doesn’t look like things will change anytime soon. St. Louis Treasurer Tishaura Jones was elected the city’s next mayor Tuesday, and her big message was an old one: “We are done ignoring the racism that has held our city and our region back.” She pledges to accomplish this by boosting social workers and reducing police.

However, what interests us is not the particulars of Jones’s messaging, which is pretty standard Democrat fare these days, or even the fact that she’s the city’s second female mayor in a row and first black female. What matters is that St. Louis, like so many American urban centers, has been slowly destroyed by Democrats over the course of many decades.

The last Republican mayor of St. Louis left office in 1949, which also happens to be roughly the city’s peak.

From 1893 to 1949, seven of the nine St. Louis mayors were Republican. During that time, the Gateway to the West boomed and was one of the most populous and prosperous in the country. It ranked fourth in population in 1900 and eighth in 1950.

Then Democrats took over.

Since 1950, the population has plummeted from about 856,000 to about 295,000, and it now ranks 68th nationwide and second in Missouri, behind cross-state rival Kansas City. And it’s crime-ridden and dilapidated. For the last two decades or so, St. Louis has been competing with Detroit for the title of most dangerous city in America. It variously has the highest murder rate in the nation.

It’s worth noting that the FBI itself warns against ranking cities based on its annual crime report because there are so many variables at play. While Leftmedia outlets engage in this very kind of ranking all the time, Leftmedia “fact-checkers” sure do bristle at the suggestion that Democrats have anything to do with urban crime. It’s “a stretch to link them,” USA Today informs us.

Is it?

Last year, 262 people were murdered in St. Louis — five short of the record in 1993, when the population was far bigger. And 2021, with 46 killings already, is on pace to break the record. Maybe a black female mayor chanting “black lives matter” and cutting the police budget will do the trick.

America’s largest cities often have a problem with crime while very few of them have Republican mayors. It’s true that most of that crime is relatively localized even within these cities (see: Chicago), and we can debate correlation versus causation all day long. But until St. Louis or another long-held Democrat urban center even entertains a Republican mayor, no one will really know what a difference that would make.

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