“Violent crime is surging in Louisiana. Woke leaders blame the police. I blame the criminals,” the Republican says in the video shared to Twitter on Friday. “A mom should not have to look over her shoulder when she’s pumping gas. I voted against the early release of violent criminals and I opposed defunding the police.
“Look, if you hate cops just because they’re cops, the next time you get in trouble, call a crackhead.”
Mr Kennedy has put crime and policing at the centre of his campaign, recently telling Fox News: “If we wanna get control of this crime problem that we have, we’re gonna have to do a couple of things. We’re gonna have to hire more cops. New Orleans and my state need 2,000 cops on the street. We’ve got less than 1,000.”
The senator argued that officers need to be better paid.
“You’re not gonna get cops to work in this woke environment without paying them,” he said.
The Democrat going up against Mr Kennedy in November, Luke Mixon, told NOLA that “we have to address violent crime”.
“We do that by funding our police departments. Senator Kennedy voted against $350bn in funding for local police departments. To paraphrase Senator Kennedy, watch what people do, not just their embarrassing one-liners,” he said.
In August, a deputy constable in New Orleans was suspended for not responding to calls for aid in a rape case. On 26 July, a woman called 911 after seeing another woman being raped on the street in the French Quarter of the city.
“Actually, there’s a police officer in front of me now,” the woman said on the call, according to The Washington Post. “I mean, this police officer isn’t even moving, he’s still just parked here.”
“He’s gone. This ... cop is still a block away ... and this girl got raped in the street corner. There is a cop a block away,” the caller added.
The officer wasn’t a member of the New Orleans Police Department but a deputy constable for the Second City Court. But the woman added that she saw two other police officers pass the area without stepping in.