House GOP’s Big Plan Fails After Biden Vetoes Their Anti-Civil Rights Agenda


President Joe Biden has vetoed an attempt led by House Republicans to overturn recent reforms in police policy enacted by local leaders in Washington, D.C. The reforms that they targeted included some of the same initiatives that Democrats at the federal level have supported, including a ban on chokeholds and other asphyxiating restraints by police officers.

As exerted after the earlier approval in D.C. of reforms to the local criminal justice system, Congress has an opportunity to intervene in the enactment of new rules in the capital because of its legal status. At an earlier point amid discussions connected to Republicans’ push to block the policing changes, though after it received approval, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) pushed in comments delivered during Congressional proceedings for the residents of Washington, D.C., to have their right to self-determination in government more comprehensively upheld. He pushed for including the district as a full-fledged state.

“If our Colleagues choose to ignore the statehood petition of nearly 700,000 Americans right in front of their nose, there is not much we can do about that kind of moral indifference and smug contempt for other Americans’ rights,” Raskin said at the time. “But at least spare everyone the Trumpian spectacle of your blaming the victims for their disenfranchisement and lack of fully comprehensive government.”

In his later veto message, Biden expressed support for action in Congress on police reform. “While I do not support every provision of the Comprehensive Policing and Justice Reform Amendment Act of 2022, this resolution from congressional Republicans would overturn commonsense police reforms such as: banning chokeholds; setting important restrictions on use of force and deadly force; improving access to body-worn camera recordings; and requiring officer training on de-escalation and use of force,” Biden said Thursday. “The Congress should respect the District of Columbia’s right to pass measures that improve public safety and public trust. I continue to call on the Congress to pass commonsense police reform legislation.”

Before Biden’s veto, the initiative made it out of the Senate with support from many Republicans and a small number of the chamber’s Democratic members who are generally known as moderate, such as Joe Manchin of West Virginia.