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Michigan congresswomen push for Senate to take up bill on policing

steve carmody
Michigan Radio

Two Michigan Democratic congresswomen are calling on Republicans in the U.S. Senate to take action on legislation on policing.

Specifically, Representative Debbie Dingell (D-Dearborn) and Representative Brenda Lawrence (D-Southfield) want the Senate to take up the George FloydJustice in Policing Act.  

Passed by the House last month, the bill would establish a federal registry of police misconduct complaints and ban the use of chokeholds, among other things.

But the legislation has stalled in the Senate. Senate Republicanshave their own proposal that doesn’t go as far as the House version.

“There is no excuse for (Senate Majority Leader) Mitch McConnell to stand in the way,” says Dingell. 

The House bill passed on a largely partisan vote. The bill is opposed by many law enforcement groups and police unions.

Despite the objections of many in law enforcement, Rep. Lawrence says the bill calls for greater accountability.

“Accountability actually rewards good cops,” says Lawrence.

President Donald Trump has also issued an executive orderon policing, but Lawrence says protesters who’ve taken to the streets since George Floyd’s death want the “transformative change” that only comes from changing the nation’s laws. 

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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