Declaring Michigan suffers from a leadership void, retired Detroit Police Chief James Craig, who raised eyebrows when he said seven years ago one solution to growing crime is more armed citizens, has jumped into the campaign to replace Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
He may have some horsepower, because gun owners in the Great Lakes State know this fellow isn’t just a flash in the pan on gun rights. He’s been saying the same thing for years, that the problem with violent crime is criminals, not guns.
As reported by the National Review, Craig says things about law abiding gun ownership that stray far from the liberal narrative.
“We don’t have a gun problem in America. What we have is a criminal problem,” he said during an interview with Fox News’ The Next Revolution. “Criminals don’t follow the law. They’re going to get guns, so what do we want to focus on? Getting guns from law-abiding citizens? . . . It’s not about guns; it’s about criminals who have guns, and they don’t get the guns legally. That’s the bottom line.”
Back in January 2014, Police1 quoted Craig observing, “Maine is one of the safest places in America. Clearly, suspects knew that good Americans were armed.”
Craig is a Detroit native who has served in law enforcement in Ohio, California, Maine and finally back home in Michigan. He’s no wallflower, and he told Fox Business, “I lead from the front.”
During that interview, Chief Craig also offered this stinging observation: “We saw what happened in Detroit last year. Certainly, we were one of the few major cities that didn’t burn last year.”
That could be translated to a slap in the face for the governors of Oregon and Washington, and the mayors of Portland and Seattle, which saw skyrocketing murders and violent crime.
Craig has explained more than once that “criminals don’t follow the law.”
According to WXYZ, Craig could emerge as the strongest Republican candidate seeking to unseat Whitmer. The report quoted Prof. Dave Dulio at Oakland University, who says Craig has name recognition. Other candidates don’t seem to share the retired top cop’s prominence.
A recent Michigan gubernatorial poll found Craig six points ahead of Whitmer, 50.4 percent to 44.4 percent, according to the National Review. The poll was done by the Trafalgar Group.
Craig is not just focusing on law and order. He’s got an eye on how small business has suffered under Whitmer during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“People want leadership,” he said. “It’s just that simple.”