View the transcript below:
Ed Henry: It is not everyday you see people carrying long guns in cities in America. What is happening on the streets of Atlanta this morning?
Sen. Loeffler: This is totally unacceptable. We cannot allow mob rule. We’re a nation of the rule of law, and this is exactly what will happen if we defund of the police. That’s exactly what the Democrats want to do. They have a movement to defund, to dismantle law enforcement. I have stood strong with law enforcement from Day One. I’ve recently introduced legislation that penalizes states and municipalities that move to defund without a budgetary reason by withholding federal highway safety transportation funds. I stand strong with law enforcement. We need to bring the JUSTICE Act to the floor, we need to have that debate. Our country expects us to do that.
Ed Henry: When you’ve got people with 12-gauge shot guns saying we’re keeping the police out…what in the world do you do about that? It has to make people wonder, at a time when we keep hearing about sick calls in the Atlanta police department, some police officers not wanting to come to work because they don’t think local officials have their backs.
Sen. Loeffler: This is exactly what I’ve been warning about with the defund the police movement. It hurts all communities, it hurts everyone in our country when we don’t have law and order, when we have mob rule. This is the vision that the Democrats have for our country. It’s a great example of why we need to move this bill to the floor – why we need to stand strong with strengthening law enforcement and rooting out bad apples. Everyone wants that. We all agree. And this can’t be politicized; we’ve got to protect our citizens.
Ed Henry: On your last point, we thought there was agreement – potentially – on police reform after these tragic deaths in Atlanta and Minneapolis and the other places. Democrats have been saying we need to pass this police reform bill. Now yourself, Tim Scott and other Republicans have put their plan out there. We hear Democrats are basically going to filibuster or block your plan in this vote today. Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House had this to say…Senator, she’s saying you and other Republicans want to get away with murder.
Sen. Loeffler: This is ridiculous. This is an insult to the effort that we led. I really commend Senator Tim Scott. His efforts have united our conference behind this bill, the JUSTICE Act – which provides the tools necessary to improve policing to give them the tools they need to keep our communities safe. There’s no room for politics here. It’s clear the Democrats want to defund the police…we owe it to the American people to stand strong with law enforcement to help keep our communities safe.