Qualified Immunity

New Mexico Abolishes Qualified Immunity

It is the third state to rein in the legal doctrine that protects state actors from accountability for misconduct.

|

New Mexico has officially ended qualified immunity, making it the third state to curb the legal doctrine that often shields state actors from accountability for alleged misconduct.

Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham on Wednesday signed House Bill 4, which will prohibit all government officials from using a qualified immunity defense in state civil court.

The doctrine remains in place at the federal level, though it has been the topic of much debate since the May 2020 police killing of George Floyd. New Mexico's law will allow victims of government malfeasance to pursue recourse through state litigation.

Qualified immunity protects public servants from civil rights lawsuits unless their misbehavior was "clearly established" somewhere in case law prior to the alleged offense. Though it was supposed to serve as a bulwark against frivolous lawsuits, the principle has become so broad that it enables rogue government workers to skirt civil accountability for overtly unethical behavior.

There were the cops who got qualified immunity for allegedly stealing $225,000 while carrying out a search warrant. There was the cop who shot a 10-year-old while aiming at the boy's nonthreatening dog. There was the cop who shot a 15-year-old who was on his way to school. There were the cops who arrested and assaulted a man for the crime of standing outside of his own house. According to the doctrine of qualified immunity, we could not expect those officials to know their behavior was wrong unless a court decision with almost identical factual circumstances existed somewhere on the books. It's quite the low standard.

"When you've got someone who has a valid claim against a police officer, but there's no existing precedent where that exact same thing has already happened," says Clark Neily, vice president for criminal justice reform at the Cato Institute, "then the New Mexico law will give them an alternative avenue to pursue that claim in a court system that is not going to throw the case out simply because there doesn't happen to be a pre-existing case exactly on point….[It] will certainly enable victims of civil rights violations to hold police accountable in circumstances where they would not otherwise have been able to before the law was passed."

While some victims are able to furnish the perfect court precedent and are thus allowed to pursue their claims, not all plaintiffs are so lucky.

As expected, the law enforcement lobby resisted the change—a good barometer for how effective this new policy might be. Over the last year, the public has become increasingly aware of public sector unions, the job of which is to defend their ranks no matter how unsavory the behavior might be and no matter what the cost to the public. As Reason's Jacob Sullum wrote in February:

Defenders of qualified immunity warn that restricting or abolishing it would have a chilling effect on policing, forcing officers to constantly worry about being sued for doing their jobs. The New Mexico Civil Rights Act, like the laws that Colorado and Connecticut  passed last year, addresses that concern by requiring government agencies (i.e., insurers and taxpayers), rather than individual defendants, to pay legal costs and damages. Notwithstanding that concession, every single Republican in the state House, joined by five Democrats, voted against the bill.

Along with those three states, New York City in March became the first metropolitan area to curtail qualified immunity for police officers. It did not address other public officials. The U.S. House has twice passed the same provision as a part of the Justice in Policing Act, though that legislation went nowhere last summer, and the qualified immunity portion in its current form is not expected to survive the Senate this year.

Former Rep. Justin Amash (L–Mich.) unveiled the first bill to end qualified immunity for all public officials in June 2020. It never received a vote. Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D–Mass.), his original co-sponsor, reintroduced the legislation last month. It is not expected to pass the filibuster despite the fact that a majority of Americans favor reform.

NEXT: Exactly Where Was Derek Chauvin's Knee, and Does It Matter?

Qualified Immunity Police Police Abuse New Mexico Colorado Connecticut New York City Criminal Justice

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

Please to post comments

48 responses to “New Mexico Abolishes Qualified Immunity

  1. Yeah well that won’t apply to leftie democrats running the joint. Although one bright spot since Biden fucked over NM with his ban on new oil and gas leases, we could see a changeover if the economic pain gets difficult. And Latinos are increasingly tired of democrat bullshit.

    1. Making money online more than 15$ just by doing simple work from home. I have received $18376 last month. Its an easy and simple job to do and its earnings are much better than regular office job and even a little child can do this and earns money. Everybody must try this job by just use the info
      on this page…..VISIT HERE

    2. we could see a changeover if the economic pain gets difficult. And Latinos are increasingly tired of democrat bullshit.

      Not based on anything I’ve seen during my time there. The state used to be counter-balanced when Albuquerque was run largely by corporatist Republicans. That’s not the case anymore, and it’s now essentially run by a Democrat version of the Santa Fe Ring now.

  2. Albuquerque is among the top ten cities in the country with the highest violent crime rate.

    https://www.cbsnews.com/pictures/the-most-dangerous-cities-in-america/43/

    It’ll be interesting to see if they have an increase in the turnover on their police force. It’ll also be interesting to see what happens to their violent crime rate. If the police become more reluctant to engage with violent criminals for fear of personal liability, the violent crime rate in your affluent gated community probably won’t change much. Let’s pay special attention to what happens in a city with an abysmal violent crime rate like urban Albuquerque.

    Oh, and someone should probably mention that protecting our rights from violent criminals is a perfectly libertarian function of government. That shouldn’t need to be said, but around here, these days, it probably does.

    1. protecting our rights from violent criminals is a perfectly libertarian function of government.

      That is absolutely correct. It is also correct if those violent criminals happen to be wearing badges.

      1. Eat shit.

        1. Aww. Someone’s mad that I am pointing out he’s turning into just another garden-variety MAGA right-wing nutter.

          1. Ken Shultz has always been a right-wing nutter.

        2. Why don’t you explain how and why you disagree with what I wrote above, if you can, Ken.

          1. He may have learned through experience that it’s a total waste of time trying to explain anything to you.

            1. No, he’s a pompous windbag with an inflated sense of self-importance who cannot stand legitimate criticism.

              1. Which in no way obviated the point that explaining anything to any of your socks is a complete waste of time.

      2. So we should be able to just sue soldiers, presidents, governors, and any other state official who are involved in illegal / violent acts. And we should be able to sue any company where someone contracted covid?

        How many unarmed people has Cuomo or even Biden killed so far? Certainly more than the police.

        Do you understand why liability protections of any kind exists at all? You tell me how society can function if every elected officials, companies and cops can get sued personally and routinely for alleged wrong decisions.

        The government will often hand pick high profile incidents, alleges a pattern, and then passes one size fits all regulation. Reason does the same for police misconduct. But these regulations generally ends up with the company / target simply taking away choices and limiting their options to avoid lawsuits. Less freedom and choices for us. That’s been the libertarian company line for YEARS.

        The bottom line is that unless the state covers legal fees of the police officers, every cop on the street will have incentive to avoid volatile situations. If you think 50times more good officers won’t get sued for every one bad cop, I have a bridge to sell you.

        Chemjeff has to be the most obtuse individual I’ve ever met in my life. I’m a person of color and a fucking blind man can see this will lead to more deaths of minorities. Hey, did you hear that fun story about that security guard who watched an Asian woman get beat to pulp then got up to close the door? “Oh, why did he not help her” is the question asked by Chemjeff’s camp. I guess. The rest of us knows.

        And gee, why are Asians getting assaulted and why did murder go up in 2020? Must be because Donald Trump is the Svengali of our time and his words of hate are inciting people to action.

    2. Questioning the idea of taxpayers covering police abuses is also a legitimate libertarian idea. Same with questioning the idea of government monopoly. I think a better argument would be instead of putting up statistics on violent crime, which honestly comes off as a scare tactic, politicians do the same thing all time to justify also sorts of government abuse, how about provide an alternative solution. That is if you think there should be a solution? Do you believe there’s even a problem?

      https://catalyst.independent.org/2020/11/12/abolish-police-monopoly/

      1. If the police become increasingly reluctant to engage with violent criminals because of their fear of liability and violent crime spikes, I don’t see much reason to believe that outcome would change if the police were privatized. We’re talking about liability and its consequences either way. Are private companies less fearful of liability?

        Oh, and even if we did privatize the police force, they would be crazy not to come to the city looking for indemnification, when their contract calls on them to engage with violent offenders. Across the worst parts of the city, the chances of them being involved in a lawsuit in any given year is 100%.

        Either the city is indemnifying the private police or they’re covering the cost of insurance one way or another–and when the chances of being sued are 100% in any given year, how much do you imagine private insurers will want to charge for that insurance? That’s like trying to buy fire insurance while your house is burning down.

        There are neighborhoods in this country where it doesn’t make financial sense to protect people’s rights from criminals–but protecting people’s rights from violent criminals needs to be done in those neighborhoods anyway, even when it doesn’t make financial sense to do so. What if the worst parts of Albuquerque are like that?

        1. “If the police become increasingly reluctant to engage with violent criminals because of their fear of liability and violent crime spikes, I don’t see much reason to believe that outcome would change if the police were privatized. We’re talking about liability and its consequences either way. Are private companies less fearful of liability?”

          The whole reason why qualified immunity is being challenged is because it more often then not protects “bad actors” in police departments. Of course private companies are fearful of liability which is why they maintain liability insurance, they’re also concerned with competition, and they’re held accountable, which is the point. The article being about Bad State Actors avoiding accountability in the first place and/or the tax payer getting stuck paying the price.

          From the article above: “There was the cop who shot a 10-year-old while aiming at the boy’s nonthreatening dog. There was the cop who shot a 15-year-old who was on his way to school. There were the cops who arrested and assaulted a man for the crime of standing outside of his own house. According to the doctrine of qualified immunity, we could not expect those officials to know their behavior was wrong unless a court decision with almost identical factual circumstances existed somewhere on the books. It’s quite the low standard.”

          It’s obviously about more than just privatization (decentralization, community policing, etc: https://lawliberty.org/decentralize-the-police/). We have to rethink how we do policing. And even more than that we need rethink the laws that we have in place regarding criminal law and police interactions to begin with. But since you’ve now asked me questions without answering my original questions regarding police reform and accountability:

          “That is if you think there should be a solution? Do you believe there’s even a problem?

          “There are neighborhoods in this country where it doesn’t make financial sense to protect people’s rights from criminals–but protecting people’s rights from violent criminals needs to be done in those neighborhoods anyway, even when it doesn’t make financial sense to do so. What if the worst parts of Albuquerque are like that?”

          Nice strawman. Neither the writer of the article above, myself, or the many other supporters of criminal justice reform oppose stopping violent crime. Nor do we oppose protecting the rights of victims. Your argument could be used shut down literally any reform whatsoever. If we tie their hands by making them think about the safety of the people around they wont want to do their jobs? Its a ridiculous argument. The debate is how do we hold “bad actors” accountable, qualified immunity has protected a number of bad actors. The question, for me at least, is do the benefits of qualified immunity outweigh the costs of keeping it?

          1. Most companies don’t have liability insurance, and insurance companies will refuse to cover companies if they have to contend with too many risks and lawsuits. Bottom line – private police force won’t work in any city that doesn’t offer them some level of liability protection.

            We have no idea if qualified immunity protects bad actors “more often than not”. Reason will zero in on any incident of police misconduct and allege a pattern, much like how gun control advocates will seize on any mass shooting to launch their campaign. Reason won’t devote any time to cover any number of frivolous lawsuits against officers who were wrongly accused. They remained completely silent on the matter of skyrocketing murder rate post BLM riots.

            Any sort of overreaching safety regulations will result in unintended consequences. If you facilitate lawsuits against corporations, they’ll simply avoid anything that invites them. Less choices for consumers, less freedom. This is both market and human behavior. This is libertarianism 101. That security guard that closed the door as an Asian woman was being assaulted was afraid of more than just the assailant. And of course, there’s the skyrocketing murder rate.

            Outright repeal of qualified immunity is nothing more than one size fits all solution that Reason would normally oppose. But they’re when it comes to police, they become Breitbart. Why should liability protection exist at all? Should I be able to sue Cuomo personally if my mother died in a NY nursing home? Or the president, any time drone strikes kill innocent people?

            The police shoot like 15 unarmed black people a year. The headline grabbing incidents of police abuse is out of several thousand police contacts that occur in a year. The country is 40% nonwhite or foreign born, if BLM was right then America would be a killing field. Cops have union problem and blacks have chronic violence and poverty problem and they sometime collide.

    3. I really don’t know who is more involved in violent crime right now – the police or the real criminals.

      1. Well, let me help you with that.

        In Albuquerque, in all of calendar year 2019, there were 105 cases of arson, 5,843 burglaries, 1,752 robberies, 93 homicides, and 478 cases of rape or forcible sodomy.

        https://www.cabq.gov/police/documents/crimestats2018_19_apd.pdf

        That’s what the real criminals did.

        Now, compare that to what the police did over the same time period.

        I dare you.

        1. Yes, but let’s look at it from the point of view of the layman. For example, they rob me. I call the police, the police come and kill me. Maybe then I don’t need to call the police?
          How do I know what mood the policeman will be in? Maybe they are friends with the bandits? Maybe the policeman will think that the rubber duck is threatening his life, or something else.

          1. The suggestion that the police are in an way competitive with real criminals in terms of the amount of crimes that are committed is preposterous.

            1. It’s not about being competitive with the amount of crime; it’s about optics; if I’ve been robbed, and calling the cops might end up with me dead, then maybe I just accept the loss, and go on with my life.

              That said; you are literally defending crime by police, by saying there’s less of it then crime by “real criminals.”

              No one should be immune to the consequences of their actions; that includes you, me, the police, politicians, literally everyone.

    4. “Albuquerque is among the top ten cities in the country with the highest violent crime rate” even though its cops have known they are protected by qualified immunity.
      “If the police become more reluctant to engage with violent criminals for fear of personal liability,” they should resign and find another job. Plenty of Americans want to be cops. There is nothing special about the people we now have as cops. According to the “most dangerous city” data, they do an especially poor job in Albuquerque, though.

      1. “If the police become more reluctant to engage with violent criminals for fear of personal liability,” they should resign and find another job. Plenty of Americans want to be cops. There is nothing special about the people we now have as cops. According to the “most dangerous city” data, they do an especially poor job in Albuquerque, though.

        You seem to be missing the point that operating in an area with a tremendous amount of potential for personal liability–because the violent crime rate is so bad–is likely to deter the police from engaging with the community in any way that might bring about a lawsuit. This is true regardless of whether we’re talking about the police who are currently on the force or new recruits. Again, the increased risk of liability associated with doing a good job in responding to violent crime doesn’t come without tradeoffs, and you’re not accounting for those tradeoffs–certainly not by suggesting that those who don’t want to bear the costs of liability should go elsewhere. The people who suffering from a crime spike won’t be the police. It’ll be the local community.

        Are you aware that civil lawsuits are decided by a preponderance of the evidence and a simple majority of the jury–rather than beyond a reasonable doubt by an unanimous jury? Maybe think of it this way: how much does liability insurance costs doctors and surgeons?

        It is entirely possible that the cost of liability insurance for a cop working in an extremely high crime neighborhood could be so expensive that no police officer could afford it. Furthermore, it’s entirely possible that a neighborhood could be so bad that no insurance company in their right minds would offer policies to insure them.

        In commercial real estate, I came across a property, once, with a building built right on top of a newly discovered earthquake fault. No company was willing to insure that property or the people within it for any rate. The building was abandoned, taken over by local government when the owner refused to pay his property taxes, and it was ultimately condemned.

        I once knew a sheriff whose job it was to hunt down people–in Watts–who skipped bail or didn’t show up for their court date. Do you imagine that people who fail to show up in court to answer charges shouldn’t be arrested? He was looking for violent offenders all the time, and there was a three strikes law! If they were on their third felony, they weren’t necessarily going quietly.

        The chances of him getting into a situation where he needed to defend himself in any given year were probably close to 100%, and any insurance company that wrote him a policy at any price he could afford for doing that would be out of their minds to do so. If no insurance company in their right mind would finance that kind of policy, why would new recruits subject themselves to that–because they’re stupid?

        Plenty of them won’t quit the force. They’ll simply stop putting themselves in situations that might create a lawsuit. And being willing to put themselves in those situations may be the difference between a high crime neighborhood and a neighborhood where things are spiraling out of control. How many individual cops would need to go bust in a high violent crime neighborhood like that before the rest of them started avoiding interacting with the public whenever the chances of an altercation arose?

        If the cops don’t like it, they can leave Albuquerque to the violent criminals to destroy really isn’t a reasonable response.

        1. I lived as a kid in a very violent neighborhood. Enough to say that getting to bed by the sound of guns was common.
          And I can testify that it was not that bad for civilians. At some points cops become a real danger. Remember they are protected by the system, but they are not angels. And at some points it is not easy to distinguish between a bandit and a cop-bandit.
          The second one is clearly more dangerous, though.

    5. So in your version of libertarianism government officials should not be held accountable for violation of rights?

      1. I didn’t say that.

        Are you saying that protecting our rights from violent criminals isn’t a legitimate libertarian responsibility of government?

        If the government has any legitimate libertarian purpose at all, it is to protect our rights. Honest libertarians can disagree about what that entails, but at the very least, I’d say we have a military to protect our rights from foreign threats; we have criminals courts to protect our rights from the police; and we have police to protect our rights from criminals.

        To the extent that government can be replaced with private contractors who can do a better job at those things with less cost–and without violating our rights–we should absolutely do that. There may be situations, however, when something needs to be done to protect our rights that doesn’t necessarily make sense on a for profit basis. The government providing defense attorneys to defendants who can’t afford them may be one example of that.

        It may also be the case that in high crime areas like Albuquerque, the people there need to have their rights protected by police who are willing to engage with violent criminals–even if no one in their right mind would sell individual cops a liability insurance policy to do so in that city. Albuquerque may not be typical in that regard, and life in the suburbs may not change much by doing away with qualified immunity. IF IF IF there are trade offs associated with doing away with qualified immunity in a high violent crime area like Albuquerque, however, as libertarians we should be looking at those trade offs with open eyes.

        Because of the Fifth Amendment, guilty murderers and rapists sometimes go free. I support the Fifth Amendment anyway–with open eyes. If you can do that in a city like Albuquerque with open eyes, that’s great! I’m sure not about to pretend there no downsides if there are. That’s delusional.

        1. “Are you saying that protecting our rights from violent criminals isn’t a legitimate libertarian responsibility of government?”

          And that’s where you start arguing against a straw man; right at the start of your point.

          This is not a choice between security and liberty, this is a choice between holding bad actors accountable, or not.

          1. “And that’s where you start arguing against a straw man; right at the start of your point.”

            You don’t seem to be grokking the fact that this rhetorical question was in response to your straw man.

            I did not say that policemen shouldn’t be held responsible for violating people’s rights anywhere–just as you didn’t say that protecting our rights from violent criminals isn’t a legitimate function of libertarian government.

            That was my point.

  3. Good.

    1. In which chemjeff stops being libertarian and ignores unintended consequences.

  4. It is the third state to rein in the legal doctrine that protects state actors from accountability for misconduct.

    Well, the first two states didn’t actually do anything of the sort, so let’s read this article and see if NM gets added to the pile.

    1. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham on Wednesday signed House Bill 4, which will prohibit all government officials from using a qualified immunity defense in state civil court.

      Well, I like what I’m seeing so far, but it’s a legal doctrine… so… reading reading… getting simplified ‘splainers on what QI is… some reference cases where cops successfully invoked QI… quotes from some people… who was fer it, who was agin it… articles of other reason writers referenced on the subject… (am I going to have to go read the actual law like I did for Colorado before I discovered they didn’t actually end Qualified Immunity?)

      Yep, going to go read the law. I’ll be back in a bit.

    2. A. A public body or person acting on behalf of,
      under color of or within the course and scope of the authority
      of a public body shall not subject or cause to be subjected any
      resident of New Mexico or person within the state to
      deprivation of any rights, privileges or immunities secured
      pursuant to the constitution of New Mexico.

      Kay, a law saying that state actors are not supposed to violate the law.

      B. A person who claims to have suffered a
      deprivation of any rights, privileges or immunities pursuant to
      the constitution of New Mexico due to acts or omissions of a
      public body or person acting on behalf of, under color of or
      within the course and scope of the authority of a public body
      may maintain an action to establish liability and recover
      actual damages and equitable or injunctive relief in any New
      Mexico district court.

      *clears throat*

      Okay… I’m no lawyer…buuuuuuut this sounds like what NM has done is said that if a person who claims to have suffered a deprivation of rights by an agent of the state, they can sue. I’m guessing that before that lawsuit will go forward, the judge will have to determine if there’s been a violation of the constitution of NM, which… could rely on ‘established case law’?

      DEFENSE OF QUALIFIED IMMUNITY.–In any claim for damages or
      relief under the New Mexico Civil Rights Act, no public body or
      person acting on behalf of, under color of or within the course
      and scope of the authority of a public body shall enjoy the
      defense of qualified immunity for causing the deprivation of
      any rights, privileges or immunities secured by the
      constitution of New Mexico.

      Well, at this time, I’m not going to read the Constitution of New Mexico… but what this is seriously beginning to feel like to me is that what they’re doing is saying “If your specific rights laid out in the Constitution of New Mexico can be clearly established as having been violated, then the state agent can’t pursue a QI defense… probably like they wouldn’t have been able to anyway.

      What else here… attorney fees, statutes of limitations… ah..AH.. “Indemnity!” Let’s take a read.

      SECTION 7. [NEW MATERIAL] INDEMNIFICATION BY PUBLIC
      BODY.–A judgment awarded pursuant to the New Mexico Civil
      Rights Act against a person acting on behalf of, under color of
      or within the course and scope of the authority of the public
      body shall be paid by the public body.

      Oh fuck off, they didn’t end qualified immunity. Fuck… right… off. We’re zero for three for fuck’s sake.

      1. Just so y’all bitches know, Colorado did more to “end qualified immunity” (yes, everything that should be inferred from scare quotes) than this bill does.

        At least in CO, the individual could be on the hook for up to $25,000 before the state kicks in. Although I think the union would probably cover the $25k. But I’m not 100% sure on that. Either way, this bill is nothing more than a bunch of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

      2. Am I missing something? I don’t think it’s perfect but it certainly seems like a step in the right direction. It isn’t great that the state pays for the judgment, but at least the victim gets some compensation and doesn’t have the lawsuit thrown out for bullshit QI reasons.

        1. The victim could already get compensation by suing the agency- as victims have been successfully doing for as long as lawsuits have been filed.

          You can google the hundreds of examples, but here’s but just a few dozen.

          Both payouts were among the largest of 44 settlements by St. Louis police that total $4.7 million since 2010, according to a review of the cases by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The settlements include cases that allege injuries or wrongful imprisonment or death.

          Because the victims were suing the agencies, QI was never in the bargain.

          Naming an individual agent of the government is one (1) avenue a victim can take in the arena of civil actions. Yes, qualified immunity makes it difficult to sue the individual agent, but I have yet to hear one single coherent explanation as to why someone would prefer to sue the individual agent who makes $42,000 a year and is ten months behind in alimony payments, and just had his jet ski repo’d for lack of payment vs suing the agency that has hundreds of millions of dollars in lawsuit insurance.

          And we have to remember what the goal was stated to be: If we could successfully sue the individual agents involved, that would act as a brake on their worst impulses, knowing that their personal livelihood was on the line.

          None of these new laws appear to address that. It has merely shifted paperwork, some names on some forms, and the individual agents involved never see the inside of a courtroom, let alone suffer any penalty for their actions.

  5. As usual Liberal leftist Dems can’t seem to analyse cause and effect. Why would ANYONE in their right mind join or even remain in law enforcement under the current climate of blaming the official and letting the thug go free?

    I don’t personally like police, but I am equipped to protect me and mine. 90% of the population isn’t and of them, 13% that is the black percentage don’t want the police. So I say remove them from black neighborhoods and let the gangs and drug lords do the enforcement of the local group morality. They can pay the local governments a “cut” and save the rest of the population the expense of policing areas that feel the po-po are just too rough on them. Pretty simple.

    I can guarantee you that within six months these ungrateful folks would be begging for the police to come back.

    One only has to look at Chicago to see how the black on black violence is worse than any other form of urban lawlessness.

    This is all knee jerk political pandering of the worse sort. Our nation is going to hell in a handbasket and the Dems are now at the helm and steering us full speed on the rocks.

  6. Crime will go up in that state, and cops will look for jobs that do cover them in other states. Good luck trying to keep the cops you do have there. When your state goes down the drain with crime everywhere, maybe you’ll change it back.

    1. If you do not allow stealing and killing, what joy is it then to work in the police, right?

    2. Read the law. The officers who *might* get named in lawsuits will never see the inside of a courtroom, nor pay a dime of personal monies towards any lawsuits in which they don’t prevail.

    3. New Mexico has some of the highest crime rates in the US in 2021. New Mexico had the second-highest violent crime rate (behind Alaska) and the second-highest property crime rate (behind Louisiana).

      And that was an improvement from 2020. Go COVID! Helping New Mexico move up from shit to sorry.

      Police misconduct is a serious issue, but unless the elimination of qualified immunity is coupled with some other actions, it’s hard to see how this is a win-win. It seems just as likely police will simply be less committed to their job. And it seems just as likely that, as the NYT would say, minorities (and perhaps women, too)) would be hit hardest.

      1. You equate cruelty and effectiveness, which may in fact be inversely related.

  7. I’ll believe it when I see it.

Comments are closed.