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Statement from House Republican Leader Klarides on “Police Accountability” Legislation

Posted on July 29, 2020 by admin


“Given the disappointing vote in the House on July 24, no one should be surprised by the Senate’s partisan acts on the so-called “police accountability’’ bill today, or Governor Lamont’s promise to sign the legislation. This is happening despite the many concerns shared by stakeholders who rightly worry that the unintended consequences of this legislation will leave our communities less safe, property taxpayers with bigger bills, and police officers fearing that the foundation from which they operate has been fundamentally destabilized—instilling worry that the reasonable actions they take in crucial moments will be used against them in civil lawsuits. It didn’t have to be this way. Republicans were willing contributors in this important conversation, finding common ground with Democrats in the idea that reform is a worthwhile pursuit. We supported well-intentioned elements of the bill, from mandating body and dashboard cameras to better training and subjecting disciplinary records to greater transparency, but too much of the final product undermines the good it seeks to do. This subject, and the resulting legislation, is extraordinarily complex. While I appreciate the many hours some of my colleagues spent on video conferences and phone calls to create this bill, I find that the headlong process to get it through the legislature is wholly inadequate. The result is legislation that lacks the type of consensus our state needs right now. Every day we should strive to be better as individuals, and treat each other fairly and as equals. We must settle for nothing less. When we see injustice, we must not only speak out, but more importantly, we must act. One side sees this legislation as fulfilling those goals, and one side sees this as falling short. We could have done better, we must do better.”