Biden will have a hard time getting his base riled up with his refusal to cater to reactive politics.
Monday, Biden’s campaign announced he does not support defunding the police, a move which pits him on the opposite side of the issue from Congressional Democrats.
From The Hill:
Democratic presidential contender Joe Biden‘s campaign said on Monday that the former vice president does not support calls to defund the police amid growing calls to do so by activists across the country.
“As his criminal justice proposal made clear months ago, Vice President Biden does not believe that police should be defunded,” Biden campaign spokesman Andrew Bates told reporters.
“He hears and shares the deep grief and frustration of those calling out for change, and is driven to ensure that justice is done and that we put a stop to this terrible pain,” Bates added. “Biden supports the urgent need for reform — including funding for public schools, summer programs, and mental health and substance abuse treatment separate from funding for policing — so that officers can focus on the job of policing.”
The Biden campaign said that Biden does support the funding of community policing programs that work to improve relations between police and communities, as well as diversifying police departments. He also backs the use of police body cameras.
Democrats in both the House and Senate are working to find support for the Justice in Policing Act, currently being sponsored in the Senate by Sens Booker and Harris. Harris is vying for Biden’s VP spot. Politico has more details:
A sweeping new police reform bill being drafted by House and Senate Democrats would ban chokeholds, limit “qualified immunity” for police officers, create a national misconduct registry, end the use of no-knock warrants in drug cases and make lynching a federal crime among other dramatic changes, according to an outline being circulated on Capitol Hill.
With the CBC taking the lead on drafting legislation, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and House leaders have vowed to have a police reform bill on the floor by the end of June, while Senate Democrats are demanding action in the upper chamber. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has said his party will try to work with Democrats on the legislation, but President Donald Trump’s hard line on the issue might make it difficult for Republican lawmakers to sign on to the initiative.
The new Democratic proposal, which will be unveiled early next week, is the most dramatic effort to rewrite federal laws on policing in decades. Yet the bill’s backers say the changes are desperately needed to address the decades-old mistreatment of black and minority communities at the hands of police.
The most controversial proposals would revise federal statutes on when police officers can be charged with use of excessive force, and whether they can be sued for such behavior.
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