Police reform sees momentum ahead of George Floyd anniversary


anamika-twyman-ghoshal·– 05/29/2021 8:16pm

Renewed momentum around the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act as the anniversary of George Floyd’s murder on Tuesday approached has led to some optimism from those around the process that a bipartisan bill is within reach, a rare achievement in a divided Washington. 

President Biden called on Congress to pass the bill by May 25 during his first address to Congress last month. But lawmakers spearheading the legislation have since said it won’t be ready.

The White House has announced its intention to give lawmakers space to work, even as it said it would prioritize the legislation over a policing reform commission and proceeded to set a difficult deadline for Congress to meet.

The administration is under pressure to get something done given its deliberate focus on addressing racial inequality.

“Obviously, we are in close touch, and we certainly defer to the expectations of the key negotiators here. And I would note that Senator Booker has indicated that there's good energy to the talks. Senator Scott has said that ‘The key for us ... is to keep making progress.’ And we certainly support those efforts,” White House Press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Thursday.

“The President talked about the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act in his joint session speech, put a marker down because he feels it's important to be bold, to be ambitious. And that's exactly what he feels we're hopefully working toward,” she added.

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