CBC Acknowledges Importance of Chauvin Sentence, Calls For George Floyd Law Passage

Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer convicted of murdering George Floyd, was sentenced to 22.5 years in prison
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Saturday, the several members of the Congressional Black Caucus, (CBC) including CBC Chairwoman Joyce Beatty, CBC First Vice-Chair Steven Horsford and CBC Second Vice-Chair Brenda Lawrence issued statements regarding Friday's sentencing of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd.

Chauvin was sentenced to 22.5 years in prison.

CBC Chairwoman Joyce Beatty said she had hoped for the maximum sentence but acknowledged the importance of the sentence.

“We were hoping to see the most severe sentencing option in this case, but the CBC acknowledges the significance of this sentence," Beatty said. "It is the reason why the CBC will continue to speak out, support protests across the country, and stand alongside our community leaders. We will continue to demand accountability and transparency in policing because too many lives depend on it. Although George Floyd is no longer with us, we honor his legacy and his family, his beautiful daughter, who will be one of the next extraordinary change makers that this country needs. We say the names of Breonna Taylor, Daunte Wright, Andre Hill, Casey Goodson, Jr., Ma'Khia Bryant, Philando Castile, and so many others. The movement is still very much prevalent, and we will use Our Power and Our Message to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act.”

CBC First Vice-Chair Steven Horsford pointed out that Chauvin's punishment was only made possible by the maximum pressure from millions who demanded accountability.

“Without the millions who raised their voices to demand accountability for George Floyd’s death, the sentence would not have happened," Horsford said. "True justice would have kept George Floyd alive to watch his daughter grow up, but this sentence shows that our courts and our institutions can begin to make the progress that we need. George Floyd’s death was not just the result of one officer or one department. Today, we continue our march for justice and equality, and we insist on the inherent worth and value of Black lives. We will bring the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to the President’s desk, and we will continue moving forward with Our Power and Our Message until we have the full equality that ever American deserves.”

CBC Second Vice-Chair Brenda Lawrence said that much more work needed to be done to bring about "actionable change" and called for the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to be implemented.

“This is about accountability, and I hope that this sentence brings some measure of peace to George Floyd's family," Lawrence said. "But let me be very clear, true justice would be George Floyd still being alive today. In his memory, and the memories of the countless Black and Brown Americans affected by police brutality, we must continue to work to reform our policing system. We need to answer the calls of the American people for actionable change, and that starts with getting the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act signed into law. This is our power, and this is our message. Let's get it done."

The CBC also said the following: "There are still two federal cases pending against Derek Chauvin. The CBC extends our deepest support for the Floyd family, and we hope that they find a sense of solace in this decision."

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