Lawmaker on George Floyd’s death: ‘We still live in a racist country’

Washington

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) ─ The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) argues that reforms to the nation’s police departments are desperately needed.

Hilary Shelton, director of the NAACP’s Washington Bureau said the killing of George Floyd is part of a long pattern of concerning police behavior.

“We’ve had this challenge for decades,” Shelton said. “The killing of unarmed African Americans continues; that we’re going to have to change the law in a manner which provides us with the protections.”

Shelton said the NAACP wants a long list of changes, including new policies on the use of force, more diversity in police hiring and leadership and the creation of police accountability review boards.

Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Connecticut, said the use of force displayed in Floyd’s arrest has no place in America.

“We still live in a racist country,” Murphy said. “We should have a national standard on the use of force to make absolutely clear when force is necessary.”

On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell,” R-Kentucky, blocked a Democratic resolution that condemned President Donald Trump’s response to the violence. Instead, McConnell introduced his own.

“It would condemn a long pattern of police violence towards black Americans, it would champion the First Amendment and praise the peaceful protests,” McConnell said.

But Murphy said the Republican-controlled Senate isn’t up to the job of creating change..

“So long as Mitch McConnell is in charge of the Senate, we aren’t going to do anything meaningful,” Murphy said.

Murphy said he hopes the political movement created by this moment will put pressure on members of both parties to take action against racism and advocate for police reform.

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