House progressives insist that ending qualified immunity for law enforcement officers must be part of any final police reform package, they said in a letter to congressional leadership on Thursday. Overhauling the practice, which would make it easier to prosecute individual officers, remains a major sticking point in bipartisan, bicameral negotiations for such a bill.
Ten House Democrats, led by Representatives Ayanna Pressley and Cori Bush, said in their letter that they’re “concerned by recent discussions that the provision ending qualified immunity for local, state, and federal law enforcement may be removed in order to strike a bipartisan deal in the Senate.”
They urged House leaders not only to keep the provision, but even to “strengthen” it as negotiations continue, since “police violence, as a weapon of structural racism, continues to have devastating and deadly consequences for Black and brown lives across our country.”
Democratic Senator Cory Booker and Representative …