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Symone Sanders: Biden Crime Bill Gave “The Only Measure” We Have To Hold Rogue Police Accountable

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Symone Sanders defended presumed Democratic presidential nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden for his support of the controversial 1994 crime bill. In an interview with MSNBC host Chris Hayes, Sanders said the bill delivers the “only measure we currently have” to hold the police accountable. “Here’s the important point here, that the only mechanism we currently have in this country to hold police officers accountable was a measure that was written into the crime bill: pattern or practice investigation,” Sanders said. “That is the only measure that we currently have to hold rogue police departments accountable. It is a power that the Obama-Biden Justice Department exercised, and which resulted in consent decrees in places like Ferguson and Baltimore.”

CHRIS HAYES, MSNBC HOST: Joe Biden, of course, has unveiled a bunch of reform measures, some of them in line with the House Democratic package. Some people have noted that Biden is an interesting fit for this moment. Joe Biden has a long career in public life. He has been a law and order kind of politician at many points in his life. He was an architect – one of the architects of the crime bill. He’s been endorsed by the police union in his home state of Delaware. He’s called for harsher penalties on people that threw raves or things like that. I guess my question to you is, do you think – has Joe Biden changed the way he views the American criminal justice system or policing, or have the times changed? How do you see that trajectory. SYMONE SANDERS, BIDEN CAMPAIGN SENIOR ADVISOR: Well, Chris, I really do not enjoy attempting to, relitigate what was happening in the early ’90s when I was like three years old, but I think context is important here. And — HAYES: Well, you work for Joe Biden, though. I mean, he was there. SANDERS: Look, the context is important here, though, Chris. And I will tell you that, at the time of the crime bill, there was rampant crime in this country. Mayors, pastors, folks all across the board were crying out for reform. But here’s the important point here, that the only mechanism we currently have in this country to hold police officers accountable was a measure that was written into the crime bill: pattern or practice investigation. That is the only measure that we currently have to hold rogue police departments accountable. It is a power that the Obama-Biden Justice Department exercised, and which resulted in consent decrees in places like Ferguson and Baltimore. And once Donald Trump came into office, it was his Justice Department, first led by Jeff Sessions, that sought to undo, specifically, the consent decree in Baltimore.

(via Breitbart Video)

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