Members of Legislature’s majority blame police, alleged ‘misinformation’ from Republicans for interest in rolling policy back to ‘reasonable suspicion’ standard
OLYMPIA…Senate Republican Leader John Braun, R-Centralia, shared the following comments in response to accusations by a House Democrat that the public’s interest in reforming the current police pursuit law is a result of lies by law enforcement and Republicans. The claim was made this week during a virtual town hall held by the legislators of the 36th Legislative District. A similar accusation was made by a Senate Democrat during a floor speech on the vote on Senate Bill 5352, which Braun previously described as a ‘half-step’ toward that reform.
“The suggestion that Republicans and law enforcement are part of a campaign of lies or ‘misinformation’ intended to manipulate people into thinking the current standard on police pursuits must be reformed is not only absurd, but also highly offensive. By discounting the concerns about the current law, Democrats are ‘gaslighting’ everyone who is crying for help, including the families of victims. Try selling that conspiracy theory to the family of the two children in the Yakima area who recently died in an accident caused by someone who could have and should have been apprehended previously but wasn’t because majority Democrats made the pursuit law friendlier to criminals. They should look Amber Goldade in the eye and tell her they think she’s either a liar or gullible because she blames the current law for the death of her daughter Immaculee in Pierce County last year.
“Democrats who support pursuit reform were not tricked. Like us, they are listening to the people who are tired of the lawlessness in our communities and are doing their jobs as public servants. Even Gov. Inslee supports rolling back the standard for pursuit to ‘reasonable suspicion’ and has said he will sign a bill doing just that if one makes it to his desk. The ball is in the House Democrats’ court. Speaker Jinkins should allow Senate Bill 5352 to receive a hearing. House members should get the opportunity to debate the bill and vote on it. Not to allow the democratic process to continue on this issue would be to subvert it to a narrow and dangerous ideology.”