Thanks to the ongoing conspiracy theories started by ex-President Donald Trump, new attacks on the Capitol are feared on Thursday, March 4. As a result, the House of Representatives met late Wednesday night to vote on landmark pieces of legislation in order to avoid having to meet during the threat of a second insurrection, a fact that should outrage every American. The legislation passed, however, is a win for every American who believes in justice and equality.
BREAKING: The House has passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, a police reform bill that would ban chokeholds and eliminate qualified immunity for law enforcement.https://t.co/TYzQlAV20r
— NPR (@NPR) March 4, 2021
The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act intends to address the unfair policing practices against black Americans, and its legislation that should have been passed decades ago. It would ban chokeholds like the one that killed George Floyd and Eric Garner, and it would end qualified immunity, which shields police officers from being held accountable for actions they take on the job, even when those actions include murdering unarmed black citizens.
According to NPR:
The wide-ranging legislation would also ban no-knock warrants, mandate data collection on police encounters, prohibit racial and religious profiling and redirect funding to community-based policing programs.
Last year, George Floyd uttered his last words, "I can't breathe" – Americans took to the streets to peacefully protest racial injustice & police brutality. Yet, it continues. With tonight's vote the George Floyd #JusticeInPolicingAct is closer to becoming the law of the land. pic.twitter.com/hnSLTR5aMv
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) March 4, 2021
It’s a far cry from the policies promoted by the Trump administration, who made a show of supporting police until insurrectionists attacked and killed a Capitol Police officer, at which point they pointed fingers in many directions and ignored reality. Under Trump, any protest against the murder of private citizens by police were called unAmerican. President Biden has an entirely different outlook.
A statement from the White House said:
‘To make our communities safe, we must begin by rebuilding trust between law enforcement and the people they are entrusted to serve and protect. We cannot rebuild that trust if we do not hold police officers accountable for abuses of power and tackle systemic misconduct – and systemic racism – in police departments.’
Breaking: House passes #HR1 220-210, most important democracy reform bill since Voting Rights Act. Includes big pro-voter policies like automatic & Election Day registration, 2 weeks early voting, no excuse absentee voting, independent redistricting & public financing elections
— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) March 4, 2021
In another piece of much-needed and historic legislation, the For the People Act was passed in order to protect voting rights and prevent things like partisan gerrymandering and voter ID laws. Republican lawmakers will have no shame protesting its passage in the Senate, but Democrats have pushed through fairness and equal voting rights, a move necessary since Republicans have pushed to keep voter turnout low and gerrymandered in their favor.
According to NPR:
‘On Wednesday, the House of Representatives passed HR 1, dubbed the For the People Act, the most significant democracy reform bill since the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The bill would go a long way toward thwarting the new GOP voter-suppression efforts by enacting a wide range of pro-voter measures for federal elections. This includes nationwide automatic and Election Day registration; two weeks of early voting in every state; the expansion of mail-in voting; the restoration of voting rights to people convicted of a felony who have served their time; restrictions on discriminatory voter-ID laws and voter purges; and the creation of independent redistricting commissions for House districts to prevent extreme gerrymandering. The bill also cracks down on dark money by implementing public financing for congressional campaigns, and it establishes new ethics rules for federal officeholders.’
New: @amyklobuchar tells me she supports ending filibuster to pass For the People Act
"we have raw exercise of political power going on where people are making it harder to vote & you can’t let that happen in a democracy because of old rules in Senate” https://t.co/Kjg8b4yS7K
— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) March 3, 2021
Featured image screenshot via YouTube