‘A maximum sentence I think is absolutely needed’ for Derek Chauvin: Karen Bass | JPNN us

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nearly a year after george floyd’s horrifying final moments shook this country to its core a minneapolis jury delivered justice the guilty verdict for derek chauvin was unequivocal but as deadly shootings continue to raise questions about american policing calls for reform are accelerating in our new abc news washington post poll 60 percent of americans say the country should do more to hold police accountable for the mistreatment of black people 42 percent say the president is doing too little to reform policing practices both president biden and republican senator tim scott expected to focus on the issue when they addressed the nation this week and our first guest is the top house democrat charged with negotiating police reform congresswoman karen bass welcome to this week thanks for joining us this morning thank you i want to begin with your reaction to this derrick chauvin verdict how significant a change does it represent well i was definitely relieved i was relieved when it happened and it was guilty on all counts i do have to say though that now we have to see what the verdict is and we need the verdict to be at the maximum level because when we have seen the occasional guilty verdict it is rare followed by the maximum sentence and considering the egregious nature of the torturing to death of george floyd a maximum sentence i think is absolutely needed let’s talk about the issue of reform as i said our poll shows a solid majority for police reform the legislation you’ve been working on wouldn’t suit many changes including a ban on chokeholds no knock warrants and racial profiling by law enforcement where did negotiations stand this morning well first of all we’ve been having informal conversations with one of the caucuses uh in the house called the problem solvers which is a bipartisan caucus along with uh senator scott and senator booker and so i believe that we can get there i absolutely do what’s most important is that we come up with ways to hold police officers accountable so we will stop seeing these videos so ending qualified immunity decreasing the the standard that is needed to prosecute an officer so we won’t see so many times when we know that a person has been killed or brutalized and then we find that they’re not even prosecuted and that’s because the standard to prosecute officers is so high we also need to raise this i’m sorry i just hit on the biggest sticking points in the negotiations though right now senator tim scott who is leading the republican side on negotiations says lowering that standard for prosecutions is not on the table well you know we still have to talk about it um oftentimes people say there are red lines i won’t cross them and then in negotiation we find a pathway forward and i’m hoping that we will be able to do that but it’s also about raising the standard of policing in the united states we have 18 000 police departments and no national standards which is why you see some practices legal in some areas and illegal in other areas and so i think that that is critical and then aside from that when we do get the bill on president biden’s desk there will still be much more that needs to be done we really do need to look at policing in america and so we know that officers are trained to shoot to kill but maybe much more emphasis could be placed on de-escalation why some incidences result in people being killed maybe there were other ways to respond other than firing some of the critics are saying you can’t just invest in policing you can’t just focus on police reform you have to invest in entire communities oh i absolutely agree with that and as a matter of fact what we have done over the years is we have divested from communities we’ve cut health care we’ve cut social services and then when there are problems that result we expect the police to pick up the pieces so one of the most glaring examples is with mental illness in our country we don’t treat mental illness properly and then people people d people get go into a crisis you wind up calling the police then the individual gets killed why do we do that why do we incarcerate people who are mentally ill why don’t we treat them provide them health care and services up front so they don’t deteriorate into a crisis so i when i said much more needs to be done that is absolutely an example of it we need to look at communities as a whole and one of the things that the bill does is provide resources to communities to re-envision public safety what do communities need in order to be safe so i think much is needed to be done i think the george floyd justice and policing act moves us a step forward after it’s passed by president after it’s signed by president biden we need to get started on all of the other issues that need to be dealt with president biden addressing congress and the country on wednesday what do you hope to hear from him well i hope that he lifts up the issue again and that he talks about the urgency of doing something right now and i think that will provide encouragement for us to move the ball forward you’re a member of congress from california it looks like a recall is going to happen on governor newsom this fall and caitlyn jenner announced her candidacy for governor on friday you remember the democratic governor gray davis was recalled in 2003 arnold schwarzenegger became governor worried that history is going to repeat itself well i absolutely hope not i mean that recalls shouldn’t have happened and this recall shouldn’t happen if you’re going to recall a governor it’s because the person has committed a crime is corrupt there has to be a reason you’re mad at him because he enforced public health guidelines to keep the state safe i think that’s ridiculous and also considering all of the anti-trans legislation around the country that republicans have put forward i have a hard time imagining that republicans are going to vote for a trans a republican trans candidate for uh for governor so this is completely unnecessary it’s a waste of taxpayers money we’re going to wind up having to spend millions of dollars for an election in november when another election is going to be held just a few months later so if people are mad with the governor he is up for re-election next year that’s where their focus should be not on a recall you think her candidacy is real or a stunt i’m not sure i’m really not sure uh whatever it is though you know she is getting a lot of publicity maybe that’s helpful but it’s certainly not helpful to the state of california we’ve been doing well we have a lot more to do there in terms of getting a hold of the virus and opening up the economy the economy is going to open up again in a few weeks that really needs to be our focus i think that it is completely unnecessary and inappropriate that the governor has to spend time now fighting a recall congresswoman bass thanks very much for your time this morning thank you.

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