WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Republican South Carolina Senator Tim Scott said he was disappointed Democrats blocked his police reform proposal from a vote in the Senate Wednesday.
“The fact that we are unwilling – not unable, that’s a different story – but unwilling to take on this really important issue together is a sad day,” Scott said.
The Senate’s lone Black Republican has led the GOP response to nationwide calls for police reform with a bill calling for body cameras and a use of force database.
Democrats said Scott’s bill doesn’t do enough. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said senators should keep negotiating.
“Why don’t we put a good bill on the floor that can pass?” Schumer said.
Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) said Schumer is playing politics.
“To me, this is one of the most disgusting acts that I’ve seen since I’ve (been in) the U.S. Senate,” Tillis said Wednesday.
Three Democrats voted to bring Scott’s bill to the floor for debate, including Alabama Senator Doug Jones (D-AL).
“Well, I just think the America people want us to do something and the only way to do something as I see it right now is to debate the bill,” Jones said.
Jones said he didn’t fully support the GOP bill but was willing to work to make changes. He supports the Democratic proposal that bans no-knock warrants and chokeholds and is poised to pass the House Thursday.
Scott said that bill isn’t going anywhere when it gets to the Senate and he doesn’t expect Republican leadership will return to the issue, “anytime soon.”