Senate Republicans Unveil Police Reform Package

SMS
Senate Republicans Unveil Police Reform Package
It would require police departments to report to the FBI uses of force that cause death or serious injury, as well as instances of no-knock warrants.
SHOW TRANSCRIPT

Senate Republicans introduced their police reform bill Wednesday. It's called the JUSTICE Act — short for Just and Unifying Solutions To Invigorate Communities Everywhere.

Sen. Tim Scott from South Carolina — the Senate's only Black Republican — helped lead the group of lawmakers who drafted the package. He said Americans are asked too often to choose between supporting communities of color and supporting the police. 

Sen. Scott: "If you support America, you support restoring the confidence that communities of color have in institutions of authority. If you support America, you know the overwhelming number of officers in this nation want to do their job, go home to their family. It is not a binary choice. This legislation encompasses that spirit."

The 106-page bill contains a mix of proposals, including requiring police departments to report to the FBI uses of force that cause death or serious injury, as well as instances of no-knock warrants. States and local departments that fail to do so would get some of their federal funding taken away. 

While the bill does not ban the use of chokeholds, it would take federal funds away from agencies that continue to employ the practice. Senate Republicans also want to provide money for police body cameras and increase penalties for false police reports. 

The bill would establish two commissions: one to review the criminal justice system and another to study conditions that affect Black males. And it would make lynching a federal hate crime.

Sen. James Lankford: "This is about transparency. This is about trying to provide information to law enforcement and to individuals. This is about accountability. But it's also about trying to build that more perfect union that we can have."

The unveiling of the GOP package comes after President Donald Trump responded to the national outcry for changes to U.S. policing by signing an executive order Tuesday.

Contains footage from CNN