Senate Heads for Stalemate on Police Reform Bill

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The Senate is headed for a stalemate on police reform with the prospects for a bipartisan deal unraveling ahead of a Wednesday vote, the Hill reports. Almost a month after George Floyd’s death led to calls for changes to the nation’s law enforcement system, senators appear to be at an impasse with no obvious path toward breaking the logjam. Democrats, absent an eleventh-hour breakthrough, are prepared to block the GOP police reform bill amid frustration with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) over the potential amendment process.

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) warned that the Republican measure — spearheaded by Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) — would not get the 60 votes needed to overcome a key procedural hurdle. “The bill … is fundamentally and irrevocably flawed,” Schumer said. “It is a cul-de-sac cynically designed by Leader McConnell so that he can say that he can do something but do nothing.” Sen. Dick Durbin (Il.), the No. 2 Senate Democrat, said a potential offramp could be to send a bill through the Judiciary Committee or create a bipartisan group to try to hash out a deal. Prospects for an agreement that could defuse the Senate’s fight over police reform before the Wednesday vote appeared bleak.

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