WASHINGTON – Senate Democrats today voted to block consideration of a police reform bill, abandoning an opportunity to debate and amend the proposal offered by Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.). The JUSTICE Act, which is cosponsored by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), included bipartisan provisions to improve accountability and transparency in policing.
“The nation is calling for police reform, and the Senate tried to respond by moving to proceed on the JUSTICE Act. Seeking solutions to reform and improve accountability in policing is a bipartisan issue. But when given the opportunity to debate and amend the JUSTICE Act on the Senate floor, Senate Democrats refused to engage,” Grassley said.
“The JUSTICE Act improves accountability and increases transparency in policing across the country. It also includes many bipartisan proposals, such as designating lynching as a federal hate crime and penalizing states for allowing police to use chokeholds. By retreating to their corner, Democrats have signaled that they don’t want to compromise. If senators weren’t satisfied with the final product after an open amendment process, they could have voted against it then. But voting to prevent us from even beginning debate when the country is hurting is shameful. I’m disappointed by today’s obstruction, but won’t allow it to deter or preclude future action on this issue.”