Congressman Stauber Hosts Public Safety Roundtable
HERMANTOWN, Minn.– Republican Congressman and former police officer, Pete Stauber hosted a public safety roundtable today in Hermantown, alongside local law enforcement and community leaders.
In the wake of the Social Justice Movements that happened around the country after George Floyd was killed by an ex-Minneapolis officer, Democratic lawmakers introduced legislation called the, “George Floyd Justice in Policing Act” last year. This bill would address ways of holding officers accountable for misconduct. It failed to pass the senate last year, but those who were at the roundtable say they still have concerns were it voted on again.
One part of the bill would limit something called “Qualified Immunity”, a defense used to protect government officials, including police officers accused of violating constitutional rights.
Hermantown Police Chief, Jim Crace stated, without the protection of qualified immunity he would retire tomorrow. Congressman Stauber says without the concerns of the law enforcement community being equally heard, public safety will be jeopardized.
“The morale, it’s never been this low. And so we have an opportunity to talk and show the public how important law enforcement is to our communities,” says Congressman Stauber,”When you defund and disparage the police, crime rises, we’ve seen that across the nation.”
Rep. Stauber voted against the “George Floyd Justice in Policing Act” in the House, but supported the Republican party’s police reform bill introduced in June 2020 called the “Justice Act”. This act had similar themes of police accountability and transparency, along with ending certain practices like chokeholds. That bill was introduced by Republicans in Congress, but they never advanced it.