Jan 29, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Jordan unsure any reform would have stopped “evil” in Tyre Nichols’ death

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday that he was not sure that "any law, any training, any reform" would have changed what happened to Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man​ who died days after he was pulled over during a traffic stop​.

Driving the news: The release of harrowing footage of police officers ​fatally beating Nichols has sparked renewed calls for police reform from some quarters.

  • Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) told ABC's "This Week" on Sunday that Nichols' death was a "call to all of us" to push for police reform.

State of play: Jordan called the footage of Nichols' beating "difficult to watch" and said he was struck by the "lack of respect for human life."

  • "I don't know that there's any law that can stop that evil that we saw," he said.
  • The five former Memphis Police Department officers who were involved in Nichols' Jan. 7 arrest — who were charged with second-degree murder on Thursday — "did not have any respect for life," Jordan said.
  • Asked by host Chuck Todd whether there were any new federal regulations he would support, Jordan said lawmakers would look at steps they feel would make sense "to help this, to make sure they have the proper training. But no amount of training's going to change what we saw in that video."
  • Jordan underscored that while certain standards could be incentivized, efforts should be kept to the state and local level.

Asked by Todd whether police reform should be a top priority for the House Judiciary Committee — which Jordan chairs — the congressman replied that Nichols' death was "certainly" an example of "weaponization of government and abuse of the state and authority against the people that they're actually supposed to serve." 

  • "But we got a number of things we are going to look at in the Judiciary committee and select committee as well," he added, referring to a newly created House subcommittee investigating the "weaponization" of the federal government.
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