Black Lives Matter

Black Lives Matter
House Democrats are committed to addressing systemic racism, ensuring justice and accountability, and ending the loss of African American lives due to violence.
House Democrats are committed to ending systemic racism, ensuring justice, and promoting transparency and accountability in policing in order to end the unacceptable loss of African American lives at the hands of law enforcement. Black lives matter, and our policies must reflect that. We are determined to prevent others from meeting the same fate as George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and so many others. To that end, House Democrats passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act on June 25. This major reform legislation would hold police accountable, change the culture of law enforcement, and build trust between law enforcement and communities.  In addition to banning chokeholds and no-knock warrants, this bill limits the transfer of military-grade weapons to local police departments, requires the collection and publication of data on use of force, creates a national database on police misconduct to ensure accountability, and removes officers’ and departments’ immunity from prosecution and lawsuits when Americans’ rights are violated.  This bill also incentivizes the establishment of independent investigatory bodies to handle cases in which someone dies during an encounter with police, and it promotes the adoption of best practices based on the Obama Administration’s 21st Century Policing Task Force. 
The passage of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act follows the passage of H.R. 35 in February to make lynching – an extrajudicial killing used to instill fear in a minority community – a federal civil rights violation for the first time in our history.  That bill was long overdue, named in memory of Emmett Till, who was brutally lynched at the age of fourteen in 1955.  It would strengthen prosecutors’ ability to go after those who participate in modern-day acts of racial violence, which we have seen so horrifyingly in the deaths of Black individuals like Ahmaud Arbery and Trayvon Martin. 
House Democrats will keep fighting to ensure that the words of our Declaration of Independence – that all are “created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” – hold true for all in our country, regardless of race.  We will continue to use our House Majority to ensure that black lives matter.
Black Lives Matter Related
The shooting of Jacob Blake seven times in the back is another horrific reminder that racial injustice and systemic racism continues to devastate our nation.
Mr. Speaker, last week, I shared with the house that my office had launched a website where Americans could learn about the George Floyd Justice In Policing Act, weigh in with their opinion on the bill, and list themselves as ‘citizen cosponsors’ if they support it.
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today on the Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys Act, which passed the House today:

Today, four weeks after the House passed the bipartisan George Floyd Justice In Policing Act, House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA-12), Congressional Black Caucus Chair Karen Bass (CA-37), and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (NY-10) called on the Republican-led Senate to take action on the legislation.
Madam Speaker, the Capitol building is a sacred space for American democracy. It is where we write our laws, inaugurate our presidents, and say a somber farewell to great Americans who earned our respect, like Dwight Eisenhower and Rosa Parks. We cannot erase the difficult history and painful truth that this temple to liberty was built using the labor of enslaved people. But we can do everything in our power to ensure that how we use the Capitol today reflects our commitment to equality and justice for all.
Madam Speaker, it has now been nearly four weeks since the House passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. Leader McConnell and the Republican-led Senate, however, refuse to call it up for consideration or a vote. Meanwhile, the problem of racial injustice is not going away on its own.
good morning. Today will be a historic day in the Congress of the United States, and in our country. Today, the House is taking a long-overdue and historic step to ensure that individuals we honor in our Capitol represent our nation’s highest ideals and not the worst in its history.
Mr. Speaker, we ought to come together, we ought to reason together, and we will get a better product in the legislative process. Sadly, our friends in the United States Senate don't always do that. Sadly, when your party was in the leadership, it didn't always do that. And yes, from time to time, we do that.
Today, House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) unveiled a new website,, to help educate and engage the public on House Democrats’ legislation to end misconduct and racial bias in law enforcement. 
The Justice in Policing Act is a direct response to the outpouring of calls across the nation to confront systemic racism and end police brutality.
These are serious times. I have walked across the Edmund Pettus Bridge 15 times, hand and hand with my brother [Congressman] John Lewis. My grandchildren have been there; my daughters have been there. In Selma in 2015, President Obama asked us this: ‘what greater form of patriotism is there than the belief that America is not yet finished, that we are strong enough to be self-critical, that each successive generation can look upon our imperfections and decide that it is in our power to remake this nation to more closely align with our highest ideals?’
I am disgusted that any American would mock the murder of George Floyd by posting satirical pictures of his anguished final moments.
Black lives matter, and the killing of African American men and women must stop. This begins with accountability. Today’s announcement by Attorney General Ellison is a step toward justice for George Floyd, his family, and Americans throughout the country who are grieving the loss of African-American men and women to racism and violence.
Americans across the country are grieving the loss of life of George Floyd and so many African-American men and women who have been victims of deadly racism and violence that continue to plague our country.