State Watch

Booker: More than ‘momentary outrage’ needed after George Floyd’s death

Bonnie Cash

Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) is calling for the protests over the death of George Floyd to lead to tangible, legislative change. 

“This is a moment in America that can’t just lead to a momentary outrage,” Booker said Sunday on CNN’S “State of the Union.” 

“We have to begin to do the concerted things that so many of our great heroes — Ella Baker, Fannie Lou Hamer, Fred Shuttlesworth — tried to demand. That the conscience of this country remains disturbed and uncomfortable until actual laws are changed that bring more justice to our country,” the senator added, referring to three prominent figures in the civil rights movement. 

Booker said his team is drafting “obvious legislation,” including changes to the laws that govern misconduct for police in the country. 

The legislation would also call for a creation of a police registry for misconduct, mandatory reporting of use-of-force incidents, and to ban racial and religious profiling and require racial bias training.

“This is not like we don’t know what to do…it’s that we have not manifested a collective will to get it done,” Booker said. 

Booker also said that President Trump, who has been criticized by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle over his response to the protests, doesn’t “deserve” his attention or emotion. 

“Our people do,” he said. “Donald Trump has, no longer has, the capacity to break my heart, to surprise me. But I say this all the time, if America, though, as a whole hasn’t broken your heart, you don’t love her enough.”

Referencing the words of Martin Luther King Jr., Booker said Americans must repent not only the “vitriol of words and violent actions of the bad people, but the appalling silence and inaction of the good people.”

“The good people of this country, that’s where my love goes. That’s what my heart hurts for,” Booker said.

Sometimes-violent protests have broken out in cities across the country after video surfaced of a Minneapolis police officer detaining Floyd by placing his knee on Floyd’s neck as Floyd said that he could not breathe. Floyd died shortly after the incident and the officer has been charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Updated: 3:17 p.m.

Tags Cory Booker Donald Trump George Floyd Sunday talk shows
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