Apr 28, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Biden: "We have all seen the knee of injustice on the neck of Black Americans"

President Biden in a joint address to Congress on Wednesday urged the Senate to pass a policing bill named for George Floyd, the Black man whose murder in Minneapolis last year led to nationwide protests against police brutality.

What he's saying: "We have all seen the knee of injustice on the neck of Black Americans," Biden said. "Now is our opportunity to make real progress."

  • "It was nearly a year ago before her father’s funeral, when I spoke with Gianna Floyd, George Floyd’s young daughter," Biden said.
  • "She said to me,'Daddy changed the world,'" the president added.
  • "After the conviction of George Floyd’s murderer, we can see how right she was — if we have the courage to act."
"My fellow Americans, we have to come together. To rebuild trust between law enforcement and the people they serve. To root out systemic racism in our criminal justice system. And to enact police reform in George Floyd’s name that passed the House already."
  • "I know the Republicans have their own ideas and are engaged in productive discussions with Democrats in the Senate. We need to work together to find a consensus," Biden continued. "But let’s get it done next month, by the first anniversary of George Floyd’s death."

The big picture: The House-passed bill overhauls qualified immunity for police officers, bans chokeholds at the federal level, prohibits no-knock warrants in federal drug cases and outlaws racial profiling, Axios' Shawna Chen reports.

  • It would also establish a national registry of police misconduct to be managed by the Department of Justice.

Go deeper: Biden calls Chauvin verdict a "giant step towards justice"

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