Senator Vance introduces motion to nullify DC’s anti-policing law
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator JD Vance (R-OH) has introduced a disapproval motion to nullify the DC Council’s “Comprehensive Policing and Justice Reform Amendment Act of 2022,” an anti-policing measure that endangers the safety of Americans in the District of Columbia. Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Ted Budd (R-NC), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Rick Scott (R-FL) join as original co-sponsors.
Vance’s disapproval motion is the Senate companion to a motion which passed the U.S. House of Representatives in April. That motion, co-led by Representatives Andrew Clyde (R-GA) and Andrew Gabarino (R-NY), passed by a vote of 229-189, and earned the support of 14 House Democrats.
“Congress must exert our constitutional authority to keep our nation’s capital safe,” said Vance. “It’s a disgrace that the capital of the most powerful nation on earth has become so dangerous, but this sad reality is exactly what we should expect when far-left activists are calling the shots. For the good of every American who lives in or visits this town, I urge my colleagues to support my disapproval motion.”
“As Washington’s streets have become overrun with violent criminals and the Metropolitan Police Department faces a historic staffing shortage, the DC Council is doubling down on its anti-police law that will only exacerbate the crime crisis and drive out more MPD officers," said Congressman Clyde. "Due to DC’s failed local leadership, it is now up to Congress to use its exclusive legislative authority to save our nation’s capital from itself. Since the House recently passed my resolution to repeal the Council’s dangerous law with bipartisan support, it’s now time for the Senate to swiftly follow suit. I thank Senator Vance for leading this commonsense effort in the Senate, and I urge all of his colleagues to join our fight to improve public safety in our nation’s capital.”
If enacted, the DC Council’s anti-police law would strip officials of discretion to block the public release of sensitive body-camera footage, undermine consent-based searches as a legitimate and constitutional investigatory tool, and ban the use of time-tested crowd control interventions. The Act clearly undermines ordinary law enforcement and criminal justice methods, politicizes policing, and incentivizes future police officers to choose other careers.
According to the DC Police Union, “Since this Act was passed on an emergency basis in DC, the MPD has lost over 1,200 police officers while only replacing 700.” MPD is likely at the lowest number of officers since the 1970s, at a time when violent crime is surging.
Violent crime is out of control in Washington.
In 2022, there were 203 homicides in DC, compared to 88 in 2012.
In the first four months of 2023, there have been 252 carjackings (74% involved firearms). Carjacking crimes have dramatically risen for five straight years in DC.
The DC Metropolitan Police Department has acknowledged an “increase in street robberies across the city” and provided “tips” to avoid being a victim. For example, they urge women “walking in public spaces” to “carry a small handbag or purse that you can grasp with a hand.”
Former DC Councilmember Jack Evans lamented earlier this year that DC is “on pace to have the most homicides since 1995” and “must address its crime issue.” “Now, homicides have surpassed 200 for the second year and our city appears lawless. People jump Metro turnstiles, shoplifting is epidemic and street crime and carjackings are routine.”