Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) blasted Democrats Thursday for playing political games by blocking debate on Republican police reform legislation in the Senate.
In an interview with Fox News, Scott laid into his colleagues on the other side of the aisle, arguing they have “no desire” to address the issue before the election in November.
“Unfortunately, the Democrats really want to hold on to this issue,” Scott said. “They believe they’re going to win in November, so they’d rather write their own reform bill without any input from the Republican Party.”
“They have no desire to actually solve this issue before the election,” he continued.
Scott detailed how he offered several gracious amendments essentially offering to “rewrite the parts of the bill that [the Democrats] want[ed] to,” but they still refused.
The Republican senator argued that the Democrats’ stonewalling really came down to one thing: They didn’t want to give Republicans a legislative victory before November.
“When you go piece by piece, the only thing you can conclude is that it wasn’t what we were talking about, it was who was talking,” he said. “And not just me, Tim Scott, but who was talking was the Republican Party saying to minority communities, to underserved communities, to liberal controlled communities like Atlanta, and Minneapolis, Cleveland; we were saying to those residents, ‘We hear you. We see you. Here are reforms.'”
Despite Republicans holding a majority in the Senate, Democrats were able to vote down debate due to the procedural requirement of 60 “yea” votes to pass.
Democrats criticized the Republican bill — which would require police departments to compile use-of-force reports and ban chokeholds in order to receive full funding from the federal government — for not addressing qualified immunity and categorically banning chokeholds.
Scott said those issues could have been addressed in debate, but Democrats refused to even allow discussion.
Here’s more from Scott following the vote Wednesday:
Sen. Tim Scott makes plea for police reform bill after Democrats block debate in Senate | ABC News