Cleveland Police Union Set to Back a U.S. Presidential Candidate

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by David C. Barnett

With about five weeks to go before the November election, the Cleveland Police Patrolman's Association is looking to make its own endorsement in the U.S. Presidential race.  The organization's  members (1450, according to their website) are due to register their choices in a special ballot, Friday.  But, there is some internal disagreement over whether the Police union should even back a candidate.

Last week, a divided group of Patrolman's Association members narrowly okayed the idea --- by one vote --- of making an endorsement.

Lynn Hampton heads a local association of African American officers called Black Shield.  He says, in his 20 years on the force, the Police Union has largely backed Republican hopefuls, and he is skeptical of GOP candidate Donald Trump's law enforcement policies --- especially his plan for allowing officers to stop-and-frisk individuals on the street who they think are suspicious. 

"The receiving end of most of that is going to be the African American community," he says.  "Not too many stop-and-frisks are going to happen in the suburbs.  That's just going to fuel more negativity and cause more problems for the police in the future."

CPPA President Steve Loomis has shown-up at a couple of recent Trump campaign events and Hampton is concerned the membership will follow his lead.  Loomis didn't return calls for a comment.  In a written statement, Loomis says the Police Union endorsement will be announced soon after the voting ends Friday at midnight.

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