Tim Scott denounces Democrats and Pelosi for blocking police reform bill
Sen. Tim Scott called out Democrats for blocking a Republican-authored police reform measure, arguing party lawmakers refused to debate the measure simply because it was written by the GOP in a presidential election year.
Scott, who is black, delivered an impassioned floor speech denouncing Democrats for blocking the JUSTICE Act, which would have banned police chokeholds, expanded police body camera use, and required new reporting by law enforcement on the use of force.
“They’ve decided to punt this bill until the election. You know why?” he said. “Because they believe the polls reflect a 15-point deficit on our side, therefore, they can get the vote they want in November. All they have to do is win the election, then roll in January and get the chance to write the police reform bill without our support at all.”
“But what I missed in this issue is that the stereotyping of Republicans as unhelpful to the black community is just as toxic and poisonous to the outcome of the most vulnerable communities in this nation,” he said. “That’s the issue.”
Scott, who grew up poor, said debating the JUSTICE Act would have sent a message to poor minority children that “you matter so much we’ll stay on this floor as long as it takes and as many amendments as it takes to get to the issue that yes, you matter.”
He said Democrats would have been able to offer many amendments to the GOP bill to try to change it, but the party still refused to allow the measure to move to the floor. It failed by a vote of 55-45, five short of the 60 needed to begin debate.
Scott said Trump was eager to work on providing funding to improve economies in impoverished black communities, medical research for diseases that impact the black community, and providing funding for historically black colleges and universities.
“I didn’t expect him to listen, but he did,” Scott said. “He leaned in and said, ‘Tell me how to help the folks I have offended.’”
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