(The Center Square) – Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley successfully kept the issue of police funding alive this week with an amendment to the Senate’s $3.5 trillion budget plan.
Hawley joined a parade of Republicans introducing nonbinding resolutions to the plan. Commonly called a “vote-a-rama,” senators add amendments and vote on them before an overall vote. Shortly before 4 a.m. Thursday, the Senate passed the overall measure 50-49.
Hawley’s amendment aims to create 100,000 new police officers.
“We are in the midst of an unprecedented crime wave in this country,” Hawley said as he sought support for his amendment on the Senate floor. “Our families and our children are in the crosshairs. This past year, the murder rate in this country rose, year over year, higher than any time in six decades.”
Hawley stated FBI reports on felony attacks on law enforcement increased 50% last year. He also mentioned the 262 homicides in the city of St. Louis.
“Cops are being targeted,” Hawley said. “Families are being targeted. Children aren’t safe on the streets. We need to take action now to put more law enforcement officers on our streets to protect our families.”
Days after he voted against the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill, he urged his Senate colleagues to do more than say they’re against defunding police departments.
“Now I recognize that my friends across the aisle said they don’t want to defund the police,” Hawley said. “That’s outstanding. Let’s go a step farther. Let’s fund them. Let’s put 100,000 new cops on the streets right now to protect our families to protect our children.”
Hawley’s amendment passed 95-3. Sens. Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont; Pat Toomey, R-Pa., and Mike Lee, R-Utah, voted against. An amendment by Sen. Tommy Tuberville, R-Ala., to withhold federal funds from municipalities that defund police departments was approved by all 99 Senators present.
“This is perhaps the highlight of this long, painful torturous night,” said Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J. “This is a gift.”
Booker said the votes would curtail accusations of cutting police budgets and mentioned the self-restraint he was using to keep from hugging Tuberville.
“I will tell you right now, thank God because there’s some people … members of this deliberative body, said we wanted to defund the police and now this senator has given us the gift. Finally, once and for all, we can put to bed this scurrilous accusation,” Booker said.
After the vote, cameras captured Booker hugging Tuberville.
Originally Appeared Here