Amodei: House Democrats Pass Partisan Police Bill, Refusing to Work with Republicans on Bipartisan Solution
Thursday, June 25, 2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Logan Tucker, 202-225-6155
WASHINGTON, D.C.– Congressman Mark Amodei (NV-02) today released the following statement after voting against H.R. 7120, the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act,which passed the Houseby a recorded vote of 236-181:
“It is no surprise that in this moment, when it’s crucial for Congress to come together to identify bipartisan solutions to address police misconduct and strengthen the accountability and transparency of our law enforcement agencies, that those addicted to partisan politics have rejected attempts to work on legislation that could be signed into law and make a meaningful difference. The Speaker has chosen to move a partisan messaging bill that fails to reflect the viewpoints of all stakeholders, creates the potential for unintended consequences, and will actually undermine the ability of law enforcement agencies to keep the communities they serve safe.
“Creating messaging opportunities for campaign advertising is the ultimate act of disrespect regarding issues in need of a solution. Leadership must now certainly be further defined. It is political leadership, or it is policy leadership. Apparently, in Washington, the former is in favor in the House.”
H.R. 7120 – the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act
Specifically, the Democrats’ bill would:
- Ban the use of chokeholds in situations where deadly force is authorized;
- Eliminate qualified immunity protections for federal, state, and local law enforcement officers, which protect officers when reasonable mistakes are made in high pressure situations, as long as they do not violate clearly established statutory or constitutional rights; qualified immunity does not provide immunity from state or federal criminal charges for an illegal or unconstitutional act;
- Create an overly broad registry of police misconduct, that includes complaints that are not adjudicated as factual; and
- Blanketban no-knock warrants which allow police officers typically working drug or other high-profile cases to enter a house or other premises without announcing their presence.
Republican Alternative: H.R. 7278 – the JUSTICE Act:
Congressman Amodei is a cosponsor of this legislation which would offer policy solutions to increase transparency, accountability, and performance so our nation’s law enforcement officers are better trained and equipped to protect and serve their communities. More specifically, this legislation would:
- Ban the use of chokeholds, except in situations where deadly force is authorized;
- Provide $500 million for state and local law enforcement agencies to equip all officers with body cameras, improve the use of body cameras, and store and retain footage. Additionally, the bill takes action to improve officer training by directing the Attorney General to develop training curricula related to the duty to intervene and de-escalation tactics and appropriates funds to pay for costs associated with new training requirements;
- Ensure law enforcement agencies and officers are held accountable by developing accessible disciplinary records systems; and
- Require states and localities to report the use of no-knock warrants to the Attorney General at the federal level on an annual basis. The Attorney General would then publish the information in a public report. Departments that fail to comply would see a 20 percent reduction in their normal federal funding.