George Floyd

Democrats Unveil Policing Reform Bill

The bill includes many items on police reformers' wishlists, but it would also pump more federal money to police departments instead of shrinking their budgets.

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Congressional Democrats released wide-ranging police reform legislation today in response to the national outrage over last month's killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer.  

The Justice in Policing Act would end qualified immunity, establish a national registry for police misconduct, ban police chokeholds and no-knock raids in some circumstances, and limit the transfer of military equipment to state and local police departments. It would also require federal law enforcement officers to wear body cameras and to have dashboard cameras installed in their vehicles.

"The martyrdom of George Floyd gave the American experience a moment of national anguish as we grieve for the black Americans killed by police brutality today," House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D–Calif.) said at a Capitol Hill news conference today. "This moment of national anguish is being transformed into a movement of national action as Americans from across the country peacefully protest to demand an end to injustice."

The protests that erupted after Floyd's death have given sudden momentum to reforms that criminal justice activists have been trying to advance for years, such as opening up police disciplinary records and getting police out of schools.

Several of the measures in the bill, like curtailing no-knock police raids and qualified immunity—a legal doctrine that shields cops from liability in civil rights lawsuits—have been on libertarians' wish lists for a long time. But there are questions about just how much some of the bill's provisions could actually impact day-to-day policing. New York City, for example, banned police chokeholds, but that didn't stop officers from violating the policy or from largely escaping discipline when they did it.

And Congress has limited power to curtail police unions, one of the biggest impediments to bringing more transparency and accountability to police departments, because they are governed on the state and local levels by "law enforcement officers bills of rights" and collective bargaining agreements.

Civil liberties groups applauded some portions of the bill but criticized provisions that would increase federal funding for state and local law enforcement. The bill would authorize a $100 million grant program for state attorney generals to conduct investigations into systemic civil rights violations at police departments. Another provision authorizes a $750 million grant program for states to investigate and prosecute excessive force incidents.

Kanya Bennett, senior legislative counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), said in a press release that, while the bill "takes significant steps to protect people and ensure accountability against police violence," it "also provides hundreds of millions more to law enforcement, and for the ACLU, that's a nonstarter." 

"While many of the reforms in this bill are laudable and vital, more must be done to change the role of police in our society fundamentally," Bennet continued. "There can be no more Band-Aid or temporary fixes when it comes to policing, which is why we are calling for divestment from law enforcement agencies and reinvestment into the Black and Brown communities that have been harmed by over policing and mass incarceration. The role of police has to be smaller, more circumscribed, and less funded with taxpayer dollars."

Several civil rights groups, including the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and the NAACP, put out statements saying that the bill isn't perfect but they still support it. Lisa Graybill, deputy legal director for criminal justice reform at SPLC Action, said the Justice in Policing Act "is an overdue step in the right direction."

The bill will face opposition from the right as well. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said at a press conference today that ending qualified immunity was a "nonstarter" for the Trump administration.

"We should vote on each proposal separately," Rep. Justin Amash (L–Mich.), who introduced his own bill to end qualified immunity, tweeted. "Massive bills with dozens of topics aren't serious efforts to change law. They're messaging bills with no expectation of getting signed. They cram in so much that they're never written well or reviewed carefully."

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  1. Why does the ACLU hate unionized workers!?

    1. We don’t need to scrap all unions because of one bad apple.

      1. You mean the teachers union or the UAW?

        1. Interesting because it unions for teachers and autoworkers that Republican are ready to get rid of now. The police unions almost always get a pass. When Scott Walker got rid of collective bargain for state workers he did not extend that to state police.

          1. Public sector employees shouldn’t have unions. Private sector unions should have competition.

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      2. one

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      3. The original saying is “One bad apple spoils the whole barrel”.

        So yes, we do need to scrap all unions(the whole barrel) because of one bad apple.

        1. one bad apple my balls. we all saw that psycho cop slo-mo suffocate floyd and ALL the cops nearby stood and watched. so in THAT tableau it was 100% of the cops present.

      4. In public unions, you’re lucky to find one good apple.

      5. Tony,

        Groups of individuals banding together to demand more pay or tell the boss that he sucks is inconsistent with libertarianism. Anyone here could have told you that. Why didn’t you just ask?

      6. Don’t need to scrap the union, just remove its ability to interfere with disciplinary proceedings and disciplinary records and make all public sector disciplinary actions public after 180 days.

      7. Funny, isn’t that what you think about cops. The actions of a few poison all of them?

        Need to keep your idiocy straight, son.

  2. lmao isn’t wearing those scarfs cultural appropriation? Also jfc, it’s embarrassing how fucking infantile and pandering the democrats are at this point. I honestly can’t understand how anyone can take them seriously at this point on anything jfc.

    1. My first thought. If Trump had worn one of those the riots would have been stepped up tenfold.
      Not to mention a certain House majority leader removing “THE MASK” and causing the whole world to get even more cases of C19!

      Street theater, pure and simple. My hypocrisy meter pegged at the high end, and then exploded.

    2. They’re gonna pander their way to a Congressional majority and the presidency. You think they don’t poll test shit? If they had pandered more to black voters in 2016 you’d be screeching about President Hillary’s inadequate response to coronavirus right now.

      1. I absolutely guarantee they didn’t poll test those ridiculous scarfs. At least you admit they don’t care about blacks and are only pandering. We wouldn’t have done anything for corona if president hilary was in charge, it wouldn’t even be a news story.

      2. Poll testing…like the 15/85 sit for defund the police? Democrats dont poll test. They react to twitter at this point.

        1. You could be right. Politics is not their strong suit traditionally.

    3. Its OK–Nancy asked her maid.

    4. Do they actually think wearing those scarves absolves them of their sin? Do they think the voters don’t know they’re being played?

      1. They are supporting WHO, Dr WHO.

        1. The Doctor is worth supporting. Even with Chibnall as showrunner.

      2. Yes, they really are that stupid.

      3. They continue to get away with it, so what difference, at this point, does it make?

    5. Dems: introduce a huge piece of legislation that is directly in line with libertarian principals and desires.

      Reason commentariat: look at der scarfs! emBaRraSsIng

    6. good point

    7. ” as we grieve for the black Americans killed by police brutality today”

      #NonBlackLivesDontMatter

  3. Nothing promotes investment in a community like disbanding the police force. Crime and disorder are great for business.

    The whole thing comes down to the usual race hustlers wanting a pay off. That and pay off the police unions to keep them loyal to the party is all this bill would do. Everything with the left comes down to stealing. It is all they know how to do.

    1. Police unions are loyal to Republicans. It is the most Republican union. Does that make Republicans hypocrites on unions when it comes to cops? Sure, but they’re used to it.

      Instead of ranting like a hysterical old man about the negro children on your lawn, why not bitch about the fact that Republicans tend to not only support police abuse but every other evil thing in existence too, apparently for shits and giggles.

      1. Police unions are loyal to Republicans”

        Oh wow! That’s not even remotely true and absolutely everyone knows that.
        Who the hell did you think you were going to fool with that whopper, Tony. You’re not even trying today.

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      2. hahahahahahahahaha.

      3. So…. police have no power in deep use cities.

        Tony. Do you even try thinking?

        1. Deep blue.

        2. All cities are deep blue. The political divide in this country at this time is entirely based on population density.

          It is not the case, however, that it is especially pleasant for black people in rural Mississippi when they interact with police.

      4. By far the greatest police abuse is refusing to provide adequate protection from criminals.

    2. About the only community that’s tried it was Camden. Crime and disorder did not go up.

      Neither, however, was disbanding the Camden police force a magic bullet. The best you can say is that it’s less bad now in Camden.

      1. It’s not like there’s no police force in Camden, it just moved from being a municipal function to a county one.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camden_County_Police_Department

        1. Moving authority out of Camden is probably an improvement.

          Bad general policy to centralize policing authority, but shitholes gonna shithole.

  4. Cut to the chase. How much money does the Kennedy Center get?

    1. Total or per bill passed this year?

  5. they look ridiculous.

    1. They are cosplaying as Africans while kneeling and pretending to be a subjugated people. It is peak white Democrat. I still am optimistic about the future because I really think hating woke white people will be the thing that brings the nation back together. Everyone from the nation of Islam to the Oathkeeper movement to the KKK can all agree how loathsome liberal whites are.

      1. lol. I’m optimistic because I’m optimistic.

      2. It’s much better not to care in the first place.

      3. ” I really think hating woke white people will be the thing that brings the nation back together.”

        It can bring the *world* together.
        #DownWithTheBaizuo

  6. Jesus Murphy that picture.

    1. I wonder what else we can trick the Dems into wearing for signaling purposes.

      Something to go along with the masks and African scarves… maybe unicorn horn headbands for lgbtqqwtfbbq awareness, and thick glasses to protest bullying?

      1. Maybe we could get them to blacken their faces to show their solidarity with black people. I swear to God these idiots would do it if you told them it was necessary to show their virtue.

        1. It worked for that Canadian pretty boy, didn’t it?

        2. Didn’t the Governor of Virginia already do that?

        3. It astonishes me that the Left portrays the Right as racist…yet it seems the Left is BIG on blackface and has been for decades.

      2. Aren’t the scarves cultural appropriation?

        Never mind. I shudder to hear the spin they have on that.

        1. Apparently, the pattern is Ghanian. The Twitter has a LOT to say about it.

          This is the most racist thing I have ever seen. Apparently, democrats think Africa is just one giant country, and all black people are the same. It’s like thinking everyone from Asia is Chinese.

          1. Ah man great point. I knew quite a few Africans in my day and one thing they HATED was how North Americans grouped them as one.

            One man I knew from Cameroon spoke fluent French (obviously) and Italian and he would pass by my father’s store once in a while and shoot the shit at the Jean-Talon market in Montreal. He wasn’t impressed with African-American identity shysters and how they appropriated his identity. Hated Jesse Jackson with a passion.

            I also know they can’t stand the victimhood, grievance hucksters.

            1. In my experience, Africans tend to not have much in common with black Americans, and generally do not have all that high an opinion of the culture

    2. Democrats Unveil Policing Reform Bill while veiled.

  7. Community Policing is what they have in London. Unarmed cops run away from anything violent, but if you have so much as a screwdriver, which we all know can be a weapon, dozens of cops storm your house. We’ll get massive surveillance and every other dysfunction London has.

    1. This is what they want here. They want to make it illegal to do anything to defend yourself or your property and make it impossible for the police to do anything except arrest people who do anything to defend themselves. The whole plan is designed to ensure the public is terrorized and submissive. It is some very sick shit.

      1. You didn’t own that!

      2. Calling teh cops about theft is racist now according to some Broad in California

      3. Even if you weren’t ranting hysterically like a legitimate mental patient, your job is to offer a better alternative then. People don’t trust insane orange fat men and theocratic cunts.

      4. The progressive movement must be ended. Decisively.

  8. establish a national registry for police misconduct

    Subject to union interventions and veto.

  9. “The martyrdom of George Floyd gave the American experience a moment of national anguish as we grieve for the black Americans killed by police brutality today,” House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi

    That’s it, babydoll. Just keep makin’ it about race.

    1. we grieve for the black Americans killed by police brutality today
      but the black Americans killed by black Americans is A-OK.

      1. Also the white deplorable killed by police.

      2. The Black Americans killed by police refusing to provide Blacks protection against Black criminals.

    2. It’s about race dude.

  10. Quite honestly, this isn’t too shabby, and I hope republicans will cross the divide to make this happen.

    Or propose more far reaching reforms on their own.

    1. I agree that it’s not too shabby. I don’t know about giving judges more money when they’re already in bed with cops in most places, but there’s a chance to actually get something impactful done here.

      Let’s just hope that they don’t try shovel a lot of other shit into this bill that will make it meaningless, though.

      1. One can hope the republicans get into a pissing match with democrats to be the wokest of them all regard police reforms, but even if that particular fantasy doesn’t come true… I expect some graft with any bill, but at least there is some substantive reform here.

        Most other reform should be at the local level anyway, so I’m not seeing too much more congress could do.

    2. Had to scroll pretty far down to get to some sanity.

      1. “All I hear is more GOP white knighting and excuse making. Just keep in mind that the GOP supports the using pointy end of state violence against its own citizens next time you decide to vote for less liberty.”

    3. Amend it to spike the unions and we’ll get a real conversation started.

  11. “also provides hundreds of millions more to law enforcement, and for the ACLU, that’s a nonstarter.”

    Seems like there are a lot of nonstarters in this bill.

    1. Seems like there are a lot of nonstarters in this bill.

      Probably bu design. The increased funding ensures that the left won’t support it – especially the ones who are calling on “de-funding the police.” Many on the right won’t support it because of the end to qualified immunity – with Trump already indicating he’ll veto it because of it.

      It’s almost like they want it to be DOA just so they can claim they “tried.”

    2. Yeah, I started reading it, and while there’s some decent stuff in there, it didn’t take long to find the first poison pill. I mean, seriously, they’re making La Raza an official part of policing police? And, of course, it mandates use of affirmative action by police forces.

      Also, the badge cam requirement sucks, because it permits badge cams that have to be turned on by the officer. They should just run continuously the whole time the officer is on the clock, recording space isn’t scare.

      Most of the bill isn’t awful, but I’d rather that they’d broken it out and omitted the poison pills. But I’m pretty sure they didn’t mean for it to become law

  12. “The martyrdom of George Floyd”

    Fucking Granny Winebox and her retarded hyperbole.

    Floyd was murdered, not martyred.
    There’s an important difference. He didn’t die for a great cause, he died because a cheap thug was callous, brutish and neglectful.
    Derek Chauvin is not Longinus.

    1. Plus it sounds like he was under the influence of fentanyl and acting erratically. So not sure how he qualifies as a martyr. There’s no cause here. Instead, they’re projecting a cause onto him.

      The thing that confuses me about left-wing racial politics is how they always latch on to people with criminal pasts.

      Surely there are blacks who died who weren’t criminals? Like wouldn’t Arbery qualify as one?

  13. Why list SPLC as a civil rights group when they are only a fund-raising apparatus?

    1. Lol, yeah.
      The SPLC is a Democratic Super-PAC also working as their direct-mail racket and smear shop, while masquerading as a human rights organization.

    2. Look up Gavin McInness’s lawsuit against them on youtube from his Censored.Tv segment. It’s excellent. Hopefully he smacks them.

  14. My God, that picture. Pelosi looks like she’s going to fall over, and Schumer looks like he’s about to rip the beating heart out of an infant.

    1. He always looks like he’s going to rip the beating heart out of an infant. I’ve never seen somebody who just oozed evil like that on camera, who wasn’t an actor in a horror movie.

  15. The Democrats will never stop funding “community policing” and they’ll continue to imagine more midnight basketball programs will stop the problem.

  16. “but it would also pump more federal money to police departments instead of shrinking their budgets.”

    So would the money going to the “defunded” Mpls police department be on top of the money going to rebuild the city after the mayor allowed it to burn down?

  17. Hey, some parts of this are not terrible. The big issue here is “Let’s spend more money to help the same judges who are completely allied to help them increase oversight on police.” Can we target some of the judges too, so we can create a process where judges will not rubber-stamp warrants?

  18. It’s a shame Democrats are coming out looking like the party of police reform when their biggest donors were police unions and usually backed the police.

    Meanwhile, libertarians have been consistent on this message for decades and will get no recognition for it. In fact, because of their small government and reform demands progressives would shriek ‘unrealistic’ and ‘Somalialand!’ for their troubles.

    Some libertarian moment, eh?

    My God how I loathe the Democrat and Liberal parties of North America for their cynical opportunism and identity politics.

      1. Fair enough but traditionally unions and Democrats lie in bed together. They still give a lot to the DNC. Wouldn’t surprise me if it’s more than the GOP. I’m too lazy to dig for that and don’t care enough to challenge my laziness to do so.

  19. The bill includes many items on police reformers’ wishlists, but it would also pump more federal money to police departments instead of shrinking their budgets.

    We’re shocked. /sarc

  20. Bans on chokeholds will lead to more shooting. Why risk a fight when just using your issued 9mm will make sure you make it home tonight. Something about unintended consequences.

    1. Loss of QI = less shooting

  21. “While many of the reforms in this bill are laudable and vital, more must be done to change the role of police in our society fundamentally,” Bennet continued. “There can be no more Band-Aid or temporary fixes when it comes to policing, which is why we are calling for divestment from law enforcement agencies and reinvestment into the Black and Brown communities that have been harmed by over policing and mass incarceration. The role of police has to be smaller, more circumscribed, and less funded with taxpayer dollars.”

    Whoa, hang on there. You want the police to be less funded by taxpayer dollars? Let’s say we reduce police departments from 100% funded by taxpayer dollars to, say, 50% funded by taxpayer dollars. Where’s the other 50% come from. Is the ACLU seriously recommending partially privatizing the police force? Weren’t they decrying private prison facilities last week? Or are the police departments supposed to make up the money on the job somehow, perhaps due to refocusing efforts away from solving violent crimes to revenue generating activities such as traffic and other nuisance law enforcement? Or perhaps they are hoping the police will expand their use of civil asset forfeiture? What is the ACLU thinking here?

  22. “There can be no more Band-Aid or temporary fixes when it comes to policing”

    “That is why this bill will absolutely be the last and final legislation ever passed dealing with the police.”

    1. Lisa Graybill, deputy legal director for criminal justice reform at SPLC Action, said the Justice in Policing Act “is an overdue step in the right direction.”

      “Give us everything you’ve got and we’ll consider that a down payment on what you owe.” The SPLC is a scam and a fraud and an extortion scheme every bit as bad as anything Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton ever dreamed up. Paying the Danegeld is the very worst way to get rid of the Dane.

      1. As I mentioned up top, McInness is suing them and shed some light into their origins and who they are and how they operate.

        Legit scam that managed to become credible to useful idiots.

  23. Even with its flaws, this legislation is probably worth passing for the good stuff in it. (Top Q: does it include anything about asset forfeiture?)

    However, it’s never going to pass the senate, so its merits aren’t particularly relevant.

  24. I love seeing these stooges struggle to wear masks for these photo ops.

  25. Trump supports qualified immunity. Most libertarian president ever! What a moron!

  26. Amash is right. Vote for each item separately.

    The feds shouldn’t be funding police anyway. It’s not the federal government’s constitutional job to fund state and local governments.

  27. This is a local issue and only a local issue. The federal government has no business nationalizing lefty incompetence and forcing it onto everyone!

    Libertarians are authoritarians – force everyone to do things THEIR way even if they’d rather do it differently.

    Government belongs with the lowest common denominator.

  28. Imposed through the commerce clause or as a penaltax?

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  29. Just remember you’re making a trade-off here. There is no way to put the hammer on bad cops without making the police-in-general worry, with the result that the police will be less effective. As was demonstrated in Baltimore:

    Annual homicide rate in Baltimore, the four years before the Freddie Gray protests and charges (2011-2014): 31.1, 34.9, 37.4, 33.8. Average: 34.3.

    Annual homicide rate in Baltimore, the four years since the Freddie Gray protests and charges (2016-2019): 51.4, 57.8, 50.5, 58.6. Average: 54.6.

    Homicide rate increase: 59%.

  30. Seems to me there is more good than bad in this bill and pragmatic libertarians should support it. At least we have a major party talking about things we’ve been talking about for decades.

  31. i’m glad i’m a white guy that doesn’t give a shit about the silly twitter pukes and whining anymore. MOST cops are dicks and like brutalizing anyone they think they can get away with it on.

    easy solution? yes. end qualified immunity, stop hiring ex-military ad stop equipping them like commandos. deny pensions to all convicted of a tortious act, or a crime of turpitude or theft

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