Maxine Waters Calls Out 2 Key Senators Following Brutal Killing of Tyre Nichols

by Xara Aziz

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) is fuming following the lethal beating of Tyre Nichols at the hands of five Black Memphis police officers early January.

During an appearance on MSNBC, she acknowledged that she is “absolutely angered by the killing of young Black men in this country” and called out several lawmakers for not giving “a darn” about police reform.

“We keep fighting, we keep begging, we keep doing everything that we possibly can,” she told Symone Sanders on her show Symone. “We don’t have enough members who care enough about this issue.”

She further expressed frustration at Senators Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (who very recently swapped her party affiliation from Democrat to independent), who are both devout supporters of the Senate filibuster allowing Republicans to block Democratic priorities including criminal justice reform.

“When you look at even two Democrats — Manchin of course, and of course that woman from Arizona — they don’t give a darn about this issue,” she expressed. “They would rather have the power to determine what happens in the Senate by using their two votes for themselves than anything else.”

The senators, she said, have also stalled on taking action on a bill named after George Floyd, which would prohibit chokeholds and no-knock warrants for all federal law enforcement agencies, craft a national registry of police abuses and make it more efficient for civilians to sue officers who violate civil laws.

“Sinema and Manchin have reiterated their support for the filibuster since the new congress convened,” according to a The Hill report. “Sinema referred to the rule as an ‘important guardrail for the institution’ during an appearance at the World Economic Forum earlier this month, before she and Manchin high-fived over their efforts to protect the rule.”

At the time of the George Floyd’s both Manchin and Sinema supported efforts to address police reform, but Republicans gave it little attention, the report added.

“Kyrsten is focused on getting things done, and is working with colleagues in both parties on proposals including increasing the use of social workers and intervention strategies that keep Arizona families safe,” a spokeswoman told the Arizona Mirror.

Meanwhile, Manchin voted to begin discussions on crafting a police reform bill. “We must unite to discuss real reforms instead of fueling the partisan divisions that plague our legislative body,” he said in a statement at the time.

President Biden has also expressed frustration in Congress’ inability to pass the police reform bill and said he was outraged after viewing Nichols’ death unfold.

“It is yet another painful reminder of the profound fear and trauma, the pain, and the exhaustion that Black and Brown Americans experience every single day,” he said in a statement.

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