Minutes after Derek Chauvin was found guilty on three counts in the murder of George Floyd, President Biden addressed that nation calling it a “moment of significant change” to fight systemic racism in policing, adding that while state and local governments “need to step up,” Biden said, so does the federal government.
He took the opportunity to push the Senate to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act that aims to bolster police accountability and prevent problem officers from moving from one department to another. The bill, which cleared the House in March, would also end certain police practices that have been under scrutiny, such as chokeholds; make it easier to prosecute police officers accused of misconduct; ban no-knock warrants in federal drug cases; make it easier to prosecute police officers accused of misconduct; prohibit racial, religious and discriminatory profiling by law enforcement agencies (mandated training) and create more community programs.
“We need Congress to act,” Biden said. “George Floyd died almost a year ago. There’s meaningful police reform legislation in his name.”
“We can’t leave this moment or look away thinking our work is done. We have to look at it as we did for those nine minutes and 29 seconds,” he said. “We have to listen. ‘I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.’