Police reform: Congress working to reach compromise to move forward

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WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Two weeks after Democrats blocked his GOP bill in the Senate, Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) said there still could be a compromise in Congress on police reform.

“Folks I’ve spoken to over the last three or four days are all at the table and they’re all Democrats who are interested in getting to a yes,” Scott said.

Senate Democrats blocked Scott’s Justice Act last month. They said it didn’t go far enough to reform policing in America.

Scott said he’s now working with Democrats to find a path forward.

“I’m hopeful that the next couple weeks maybe produce the type of outcomes that we’re looking for,” Scott said.

The conversation came back into the spotlight during a visit from Attorney General William Barr to South Carolina on Wednesday. Barr and Scott met with a group of religious, business and community leaders to discuss the issues facing law enforcement.

Barr said the key to reform is balance.

“We need to support the police so they’re out there protecting the community but by the same time, we have to be sure there aren’t these abusing,” Barr said.

Barr said “defunding the police” isn’t an option.

However, it appears a growing number of Democrat and Republican senators agree that police need support in the field from mental health professionals and the government needs to find a way to pay for that.

“So the importance of funding departments with co-responders so that we have the resources necessary to deal with these tragic issues,” Scott said.

Scott said he is looking into changing his bill to ban racial profiling and to make it easier for a victim’s family to sue police departments – two measures that might entice Democratic support.

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