COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – On Wednesday, Senator Tim Scott hosted Attorney General William Barr in downtown Columbia for talks with local leaders regarding justice in our state, and in the country as a whole.
Nearly 30 community and faith leaders joined Scott and Barr at Bethel A.M.E. church for a private dialogue, before the men headed downtown to meet with law enforcement officials.
Senator Scott said that he was thankful Barr made the trip, and that he “looks forward to continuing the conversations.”
The talks come on the heels of Scott’s recent JUSTICE Act proposal for police reform, which failed to pass as Senate democrats felt it did not call for enough change. Scott is the lone black republican senator, and led House efforts to draft law enforcement reform legislation following the death of George Floyd and subsequent protests demanding racial justice that swept the nation.
Scott said that after Wednesday’s events, he is “hopeful that the next couple of weeks may produce the results that we’re looking for.”
Barr tried to, in his words, “strike a balance,” saying “there is no tougher job in America than being a police officer. We need these institutions to provide peace and security in society to allow our lives to flourish. At the same time, whenever you have that kind of institution, you have the possibility of abuse.”
He concluded by saying that “we need to support the police so that they’re out there protecting the community, but at the same time we have to be sure that there aren’t these abuses.”