Update (1435ET): White House spox Kaleigh McEnany confirmed Monday that the Democrats police reform bill is a "non-starter".
- DEMOCRATS IMMUNITY CHANGE PROPOSAL IS A NON-STARTER: MCENANY
- MCENANY: TRUMP `APPALLED' BY DEFUND THE POLICE MOVEMENT
Not exactly a shock.
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As the push for abolishing police departments intensifies, Democrats, led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, just unveiled the "sweeping" police reform bill that they've been talking about all weekend.
The "Justice in Policing Act of 2020" would ban chokeholds, establish a national database to track police misconduct and prohibit certain no-knock warrants, among a long list of other reforms.
Per WaPo, the bill would also change federal law so that victims of excessive force or other violations only need prove that officers "recklessly" deprived them of their rights to sue them in civil court. This limiting of "qualified immunity" has been cited as police unions as a major misstep that would dissuade recruits from becoming officers.
The Supreme Court first introduced qualified immunity doctrine in 1967 initially to help protect cops from frivolous lawsuits and financial liability in cases where they acted in good faith. Starting around 2005, courts increasingly applied the doctrine to cases involving the use of excessive or deadly force by police, prompting widespread criticism from progressive lawyers and the ACLU.
If passed, the bill would also expand DoJ powers to investigate and prosecute police misconduct, a capability that has been "undermined by the Trump administration," the document said. It would grant subpoena power to the department’s Civil Rights Division to conduct "pattern and practice" investigations, and grant subpoena power to states attorneys offices to do the same.
Before unveiling the details of the legislation, Congressional Dems knelt for 8 minutes, 46 seconds, the amount of time George Floyd - whose killing 2 weeks ago by police revived the push for police "reform" - was on the ground before he was killed due to an officer knee to his neck.
The bill will also make lynching a hate crime, Pelosi said.
The full bill is expected to be released later on Monday. The House Judiciary will hold its first hearing on the issue of police reform on Wednesday.