As the mainstream media all but declares the 2020 election for Joe Biden, Democrats are making mistakes. They’re saying and doing things that could cause problems—if Republicans step up their game.
Consider the congressional logjam over police reform. After George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis, the nation was angry and aghast. Then Rayshard Brooks was killed in Atlanta, and the demand for change grew even stronger.
Yet when the Senate moved to take up the comprehensive police reform bill introduced by Tim Scott (R., S.C.), Democrats blocked its consideration, despite the bill’s many similarities with the Democratic House’s measure. Sen. Scott guaranteed votes on any amendments Democrats wanted, but no matter.
This intransigence is an opportunity to argue that Senate Democrats are more interested in election talking points than giving meaning to the deaths of Floyd, Brooks, Breonna Taylor and others by passing legislation that reforms policing.
Republicans can broaden the issue by pointing out that while a new law can solve certain pressing problems, the criminal-justice system needs a systematic review. A bill by Sens. John Cornyn (R., Texas) and Gary Peters (D., Mich.) creating a National Criminal Justice Commission would do that, reporting to the next Congress on additional reform measures. This passed the Senate by unanimous consent in 2018 but died in the House.
By pressing for the Scott bill now and the Cornyn-Peters commission to follow, Republicans can show they’re determined to turn the nation’s pain into something good. If everybody mobilizes, the GOP can regain the offensive.
Another opening for Republicans came Sunday, when CNN’s Dana Bash asked Sen. Tammy Duckworth—who’s being vetted as a possible running mate for Mr. Biden—if statues of George Washington should be taken down.
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