US lawmakers announce bipartisan agreement to stop police abuses
Washington, Jun 24 (EFE) .- After months of debate, Democratic and Republican lawmakers announced Thursday that they have reached an agreement in principle on major police reform to stop abuses by officers against racial minorities in the United States.
Republican Sen. Tim Scott, Democrat Cory Booker and Democratic Rep. Karen Bass announced the agreement in principle in a statement Thursday night.
“After months of working in good faith, we have reached an agreement on a framework addressing the major issues for bipartisan police reform,” the lawmakers said in a joint statement.
However, they acknowledged that “there is still more work to be done” to reach a final bill, which will face a tough battle in the Senate where Democrats have a weak majority of 50 seats and would need 60 votes to approve it.
The lawmakers did not disclose the content of the agreement.
One of the points that has complicated the negotiations is qualified immunity for the police, which makes it very difficult to file lawsuits against officers accused of having used disproportionate force.
In a statement, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said President Joe Biden is “grateful” for the work the three lawmakers have been doing and is looking “forward to collaborating with them on the path ahead .”
The effort to reform the police comes after years of protests over the deaths of African Americans at the hands of officers, especially after the case of George Floyd, who was killed in police custody in May 2020 while begging to be allowed to breathe.
The Democratic majority in the House of Representatives approved a law to reform the police force named after George Floyd in early March, but that bill has been stuck in the Senate.
Biden wanted to pass major police reform before the first anniversary of Floyd’s death, on May 25 of this year, but strong disagreements in Congress prevented it. EFE